Our modern, fast-paced lives are filled with stressors and other things that might jeopardize our health. In the midst of the hustle and bustle of everyday life, one of the things that would surely lift a weary spirit—especially that of a patient– is the sight of a lush garden filled with flowering plants, fruit trees, and others. It is definitely an understatement to say that a beautiful landscape could have a positive impact on the health of people who are sick or recuperating.
Hospitals in Lowell, for example, could definitely gain benefits from commercial landscaping services. Several studies have already been conducted that show the positive influence of gardens in healthcare facilities. Here are some of the health benefits of gardens in hospitals:
Cleans the air
Plants absorb carbon dioxide in the air when they photosynthesize. In exchange, they give off the oxygen that we need in order to breathe and live. In addition to carbon dioxide, plants also absorb other chemicals and pollutants in the air like dust, thereby purifying the air in the area. For people who are sick, healthy and clean air is very important in their road to recovery.
Gardens are particularly capable of promoting healing to patients due to the human tendency to find relief from nature. As a race, we are hard-wired to be drawn to and soothed by nature and its elements. In one study, patients who underwent a gall-bladder surgery were split into two groups. One group was given a view of nature, while the other had a view of a wall. The half given the nature view was able to tolerate pain better, sleep better, become less stressed, and spent considerably less time in the hospital.
In a study conducted by researchers Cooper Marcus and Marni Barnes, it was found that at least two-thirds of people would choose to go to a natural setting when they are stressed. Another research found that 95% of people who participated claimed that spending time outdoors improved their mood from being stressed, depressed, and anxious to becoming more calm and balanced. In addition, many studies claim that showing images of nature after a particularly stressful event produces a calming effect. Such ability allows people to recuperate and recover faster.
The therapeutic effects of looking at greenery translate to improvements in the patients’ overall sense of wellbeing and renewed hopefulness. According to a researcher on this field, plants remove the anxiety and stress that the instant present brings by showing people that there are long lasting patterns in life. This could be seen in how their growth is not erratic; instead, it is steady and progressive.
Human beings find nature engrossing. For researchers, this is because we evolved in nature; therefore, we are biologically predisposed to respond favorably to it. Such a positive response is more apparent to patients in healthcare facilities such as hospitals. For patients, landscapes provide not just a place where they could breathe fresh air, but also a refuge that promotes relief and wellbeing.