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Are Houseplants Therapeutic?

12 February, 2020

Houseplants
, therapy

We have read a lot about various kinds of therapy, especially the kind that benefits seniors. The various therapies that we have seen so far are laughter, writing, flower, pet, water, art, colouring like Mandala, aroma, music and a few more. These are, of course, apart from the typical wellness therapies like Yoga, Physiotherapy or regular exercise, etc.

On a different page, we have seen how houseplants are something good to have in our homes. We saw how, they don’t just add to our decor, but also help purify the indoor air. At a time when people in many Indian cities are fighting the pollution nemesis, houseplants may well be a doable solution that most people can easily take up.

What if we say that houseplants can combine the best of both worlds and act as therapy too? Indeed, just like how we learned that having aquariums in our house can be therapy for seniors, so are houseplants. Read on to know how house plants can be beneficial for you.

The scientific evidence

There are studies that have proved that certain plants can purify the indoor air to a great extent. We all know that plants convert carbon dioxide into oxygen, and certain plants do it more, especially when placed indoors. A few of them even clear the indoor air of cancer-causing toxins!

Plants placed across your living spaces can really colour and a look at your space and make you feel good. Also, these can improve your mood by leaps and bounds. If you tend to them by yourself, then the joy of seeing these plants grow, flower or branch out, can make you very happy. This is a kind of enormous satisfaction that you get is when your own children grow. Tending to plants by touching them is part of sensory therapy, and the greenery and the various colours can soothe a person (visual therapy), just like how the fishes and the aquarium do.

A study on the topic has proved that gardening can help reduce the dementia risk by 36% and that statistic is a great impact maker. The activity provides a kind of wholesome feeling and satisfaction that can benefit seniors in a great way.

The what and how

Most houseplants are easy to buy and maintain, and you will not find them as an extra chore; rather you may learn to love tending to them. This is more so if you choose the right plants and the right space to put them in. Not all plants can be grown indoors, or provide you the same benefit. While few plants can provide you immense benefit, something which you were craving for, and you were not aware of the same. For example, a jasmine plant is something that we often associate as an outdoor plant, but it can be placed indoors and comes with its share of benefits.

It is important to ensure that the plants that are chosen for your indoor space also match your decor and provide you the soothing colour therapy as well. Additionally, please make sure that they do not have thorns or toxic or allergic leaves that can harm you in any way. This is an important aspect to be considered, especially if you also have kids and pets at home.

Another thing to keep in mind is that these should able to be moved around your house if you so, please. They should not be too heavy or large so that you cannot move them around, or they will not fit into a certain space. Also, mixing and matching them around can help change the look of your spaces.

An interesting trend that has started off in the cities now is to provide plants as return gifts on occasions like marriages, birthdays and anniversaries. This could be a great way of promoting the environmental cause. And considering that plants provide so many additional benefits to people of all ages, it may be a good idea to start this trend in your circles. If you have any occasion coming up, you could request people to get you, only plants as gifts as well. These could be labeled with their name and grown, so that every time you tend to them or look at them, you will be reminded of that person with warmth.

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