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Forget about being a pet parent, the latest trend is to become a plant parent. When it comes to plants, there is such a variety to choose from, that there is no doubt you’ll be able to create the perfect green aesthetic in your home.

But having plants around can be beneficial beyond just adding a pop of color to your home. One of the best reasons for having plants in your home is to help make you calmer. As research done by The Cavell Centre in Peterborough in the UK suggested, house plants can help cure feelings such as loneliness, depression, and anxiety.

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Out of the people studied, 83% of the participants reported that their indoor foliage helped make them feel less anxious or restless, and overall helped to improve their mood and sense of well-being.

According to Treehugger via a general practitioner from the Cornbrook Medical Practice, Dr. Philippa James, “There’s a lot of evidence now about how two hours a week in a green space can lift mood – and then that too has physical, mental and emotional benefits. That’s something we need to harness.”

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While some of us may not live near a forest or major green area, that doesn’t mean that we can’t recreate such an environment right in our own living rooms or bedrooms with a little help from house plants.

A licensed therapist and social worker, Amanda Stemen, further added to the Greatist, “When we spend time around plants, we feel more deeply connected to ourselves, others, and something greater, which is necessary to combat loneliness.”

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There are other benefits besides seeing and spending time surrounded by greenery inside our homes. Since plants are living beings, caring for them can also instill us with a new sense of purpose. It can be uplifting to see your efforts paying off as your little plant babies thrive. It creates a sense of joy, as well as being a motivation to continue caring for even more green things.

As Stemen reports, since many of us are working from home, being inside all day can create a nostalgia and sense of longing to be outside with trees and grass and other plants. If you’ve been feeling more of a pull towards your yard or local park, then you are not alone.

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Medical experts from the UK have also shared, according to Greatist, that being outside in nature is vital to a person’s health. In fact, they’ve actually written “nature prescriptions” for people with a variety of health issues, such as diabetes, heart conditions, anxiety, mental illness, and other chronic conditions.

Over in Japan, there is the practice known as shinrin-yoku, or forest bathing in the English translation. The practice of shinrin-yoku is to strengthen the immune system and lower blood pressure, as well as provide relief to stress and anxiety. I think we can all agree that lowering stress levels is quite frequently needed – especially in these strange COVID times.

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So, if you haven’t already gotten on the bandwagon of plant parenthood, you might want to think about treating yourself to a few little plants next time you’re near a nursery or garden center. Not only will it be a fun way of creating an aesthetically pleasing look to your home, but it will also help to boost your mental health. We can all do with all the happy vibes we can get.