We all know that having fresh flowers or greenery in your home, office, or near your hospital bed can be great for stress relief. Sending flowers to your sick or sad friend might be a universal go-to gift, but the heartwarming gesture is actually more helpful than you think.
It may be surprising, but there is more to flowers than just a sweet smell and a pretty face — they can have some seriously positive effects on our health, too. A study by the American Society for Horticultural Science (ASHS) has made the discovery that the therapeutic influence of plants on surgical patients is so significant that they tend to report lower pain levels.
The Positive Effects of Flowers
The ASHS performed a study evaluating if plants have therapeutic influences on surgical patients, and the results are honestly kind of shocking. Ninety patients - all had undergone appendectomy surgery - were split into rooms either with plants or without plants, and those with some kind of foliage had wildly different results than those who had not.
Flowers as Complementary Medicine
According to the study, those exposed to flowers had lower blood pressure and heart rate, lower ratings of pain, anxiety, and fatigue, and more positive feelings and higher satisfaction about their rooms than the patients without foliage. The findings from this research actually suggest that flowers should be "complementary medicine" for recovering patients. Now that's an idea I can get behind.
Flowers Reduce Stress
Bouquets of flowers can actually also make us feel less stressed out, according to a study published in Complementary Therapies in Medicines. The study gave college-aged women a fresh vase of roses for their dorm rooms, and the results included the subjects feeling more relaxed and stress-free than before. I don't know about you, but this info is persuading me to go out and buy myself a bouquet — or six.
Header and feature photo by Pixabay.