Feeling stressed? Try watching cartoon shows to beat the blues

When a national topper gives study tips, it is bound to get a lot of attention. So when IIT-JEE (Advanced) topper Sarvesh Mehtani said that while on one hand he gave up social media time — to focus better on studies — he did watch his favourite cartoon show — Doraemon — to de-stress, everyone noticed.

Experts agree that cartoons indeed are a surefire way to beat the blues. “Cartoons tend to be light in nature and are full of humour with a small lesson or learning. The creatives, visuals, out of the box ideas and beings projected on screen takes one in the world of new possibilities and imaginations. Individual differences do exist, but as per the recent researches, watching cartoons has been a great way to reduce stress and enhance creative thinking,” says Namrata Dagia, clinical psychologist, hypnotherapist and founder, The Illuminating Zone, Kandivili (W).

While for adults watching cartoons is a great way to unwind, for kids it is an effective educational tool.

While in general, experts recommend this form of recreation to almost everyone; it does not work if someone is sceptical. “Relaxation by means of watching cartoons may often work and help in case of receptive individuals who have some liking for childhood fantasies. People who are more serious and temperamental may consider this exercise rubbish,” says Dr PD Lakdawala, psychiatrist, Bhatia Hospital, Tardeo.

For adults it is a great way to unwind, but for kids it is an effective educational tool. “Watching cartoons can build concentration and vocabulary and it is a good and safe form of entertainment, helpful in exploring and observing and it enhances imagination and creativity,” says Dr Fazal Nabi, consultant paediatrician and intensivist, Jaslok Hospital and Research Centre, Pedder Road.

Genre Matters

While most cartoons are funny, some of them have a central theme of mystery, action, etc. and watching them could be detrimental to health. “Watching violence in any form, even if it is in cartoons may result in aggravating the existing stress levels in a person. It can also cultivate aggressive impulses, which are harmful,” says Lakdawala. “As far as possible violence inducing cartoons should be avoided,” agrees Nabi.

Set The Limits

However, like all things in excess, watching too many cartoon shows also has a downside. “One can very much get addicted to cartoons. Cartoons are interesting and people get engrossed in it and forget about time and place too. People should be aware of time and their priorities. If one is aware of their addiction, he or she should set an alarm or should make arrangements for reminders,” says city-based psychologist Mary George Varghese.

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