Indoor plants offer a wide range of benefits, making them a popular choice for home and office environments. Living in a healthy and peaceful environment can be beneficial to your overall wellness by reducing stress and improving air quality, writes Annika Õismaa from the gardening center Hortes. Here are some of the key advantages of having indoor plants:
Improved air quality
Indoor plants help purify the air by absorbing carbon dioxide and releasing oxygen during photosynthesis. They also remove toxins and pollutants from the air, making it fresher and healthier to breathe. Modern furnishings, synthetic building materials, and even your own carpet may carry chemicals which can make up to 90 percent of indoor air pollution. Household chemicals come from objects and materials like:
- cleaning solutions
- synthetic materials such as plastic, fiber, and rubber
Natural humidity regulation
Many indoor plants release moisture through a process called transpiration, which can help maintain optimal indoor humidity levels. This is especially beneficial in dry, indoor environments or during the winter months when heating systems can dry out the air. This can be particularly helpful in preventing dry skin and respiratory issues.
Enhanced mood and well-being
Being around indoor plants can have a positive impact on mental health. Studies have shown that they can reduce stress, anxiety, and depression while promoting feelings of calm and relaxation.
Indoor plants can improve concentration and focus, leading to increased productivity in work or study environments. They create a more pleasant and visually appealing atmosphere that can boost motivation. Being stuck in an office or other small space for hours at a time can feel overbearing. Studies have found that less than 20 minutes is enough to make us feel more at peace.
Indoor plants can enhance the aesthetics of any space. They come in various shapes, sizes, and colors, allowing you to decorate your home or office in a way that suits your personal style.
Some indoor plants, particularly those with large, dense foliage, can help absorb and muffle sound, reducing noise levels in indoor spaces.
Studies have suggested that indoor plants can help lower blood pressure and reduce the frequency of headaches and other health issues. The presence of greenery can promote overall well-being. According to a 1989 NASA study, houseplants can help improve air quality by removing cancer-causing chemicals like formaldehyde and benzene from the air. NASA recommends two or three plants for every 100 square feet/ 9 square meters.
A 2015 study found that caring for indoor plants reduced psychological and physiological stress in young adults. Participants in the study reported feelings of comfort when working with plants versus working on a computer.
Improved sleep quality
Certain indoor plants, like lavender and jasmine, release fragrances that are known for their calming and sleep-inducing properties. Placing these plants in your bedroom can help improve sleep quality.
Connection with nature
Having indoor plants allows people to connect with nature and bring a touch of the outdoors into their indoor spaces. This connection with the natural world can have a soothing and grounding effect.
Caring for indoor plants can be a fun and educational experience, especially for children. It teaches responsibility and nurtures an appreciation for the environment.
It’s worth noting that while indoor plants offer numerous benefits, they also require proper care and attention to thrive. Different plants have different care requirements, so it’s essential to choose plants that are suitable for your specific indoor environment and your level of commitment to their care.