7 ways plants can relax your mind

by Francesca

Houseplants should be integrated in your house to create mindfulness. An environmentally rich addition to you house will ease stress levels and relax your mind. In this current climate it is normal to feel anxious and overwhelmed, creating a plant space or filling each room with plants will subtly ease you into meditation. Active plant care is a small but effective way to look after your mental wellbeing.  

By bringing your attention to caring for your plants, you can focus solely on the present moment and distract your brain from anxious thoughts. Plants are also a great way to take a much-needed technology break, focusing on your plants even if it is a few minutes a day, forces you to stop. To help you learn just how effective plants are, the experts at Forest Healthcare have described the 7 ways they can relax your mind.

1)    Reduces background noise

If you live in a busy area, you might be constantly hearing sounds of cars and passers-by, this makes it increasingly difficult to relax and rejuvenate. Creating a stress-free indoor plant sanctuary will help to reduce noise levels indoors. This is because large plants carry a large surface area, making it more effective at absorbing sound and providing tranquillity. Place your larger plants around the perimeter of your rooms so the sound bounces from the walls straight into the surface area of the leaves.

2)    Eliminates harmful toxins and improves air quality

Plants are natural air purifiers and help to remove toxins from the atmosphere. Depending on your exposure, chemicals in the air could lead to negative health effects depending on your exposure. Plants can take carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and produce oxygen which improves the air quality. They also have properties which help to reduce airborne dust levels and increase air humidity so you can eliminate coughing, fatigue and itchy eyes.

3)    Increases productivity

Research has proven that people perform better at attention-based tasks when surrounded by plants. Everyone has certain days in which they spend a lot time staring at a screen, unable to be productive, all you need to solve that is plant therapy. A research study conducted at Exeter University found out that indoor plants can improve concentration, productivity and staff well-being by 47%. These effects come from stimulating plant colours, calming aromas and oxygenating abilities. Since many of us are working from home, when the weather isn’t great, we spend several hours indoors and are being exposed to high amounts of CO2, which make it harder to concentrate and think clearly. The oxygen that is created by indoor plants helps to balance the level of CO2 in our bodies.

4)    Helps you sleep

We all need enough sleep to have a positive effect on our health and be productive for the day ahead. Plants can help you get a good night’s sleep by purifying the air in your bedroom and producing a scent that helps you to relax. Plants such as aloe vera give out a lot of oxygen at night that help you to breathe better as well as removing the toxins from the air.

5)    Reduce the risk of headaches

Plants have air-purifying properties that can counter headaches. Research has revealed that plants can help to remove benzene, trichloroethylene and formaldehyde from the air. Formaldehyde is a gas that is used in the production of leather and wood products, which is why its present in many indoor environments, it is a common cause of headaches due to the strong odours.

6)    Brings in nature

Many of us live in busy cities contacting the modern world every day but have very little interaction with nature. By bringing the nature into your home, our minds can sub consciously benefit from the soothing effects of greenery. This provides a great opportunity to switch off from your daily tasks so you can enjoy nurturing your new plant sanctuary. Adding a potted plant to a bedside table for example, can instantly make your space look more appealing.

7)    Relieve stress and anxiety

Taking care of your plants as you finish your day can help reduce any feeling of stress and anxiety. Even a simple gesture such as touching the leaves of your plants for 2 minutes can have a positive impact on your stress levels. House plants for anxiety help alleviate symptoms because they promote higher quality air. Plants have a lot of stress relief benefits that deliver natural healing right into your home. Pothos are a great house plant for beginners because they’re easy to maintain and help to cleanse the air around you.

Interior designer, Vanessa Arbuthnott, shares her top tips on houseplants: “Geraniums are great in the Winter. Before the first frost, bring them in from the garden and they all sit together and continue to flower until Christmas! Plants create another beating heart in the house and bring colour and scent. Go for plants which match the décor of your room, smaller rooms tend to look better with delicate flowers and bigger rooms with larger centrepieces.”

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