A live plant or bunch of flowers in the hospital ward or private room helps patients recover more quickly. Nature is a great healer and tends to make people more satisfied with life, less stressed and less anxious.
Image: Marie Vonow
People often take a gift of flowers or a plant when visiting someone in hospital. Studies show a number of health benefits from having flowers or a pot plant in the hospital ward. Patients tend to get better more quickly after surgery. They require less medication to manage pain. They tend to have lower blood pressure and less anxiety.
Plants improve the quality of indoor air by removing some pollutants. They also absorb some of the carbon dioxide in the air and replace it with oxygen. This boosts the energy of people in the room and they are less likely to get headaches.
Studies have been done where some patients are put in rooms with plants and a control group is put in similar rooms without plants. The plants were provided by those doing the research, not friends of the patients. Patients in rooms with plants generally recovered more quickly and experienced less pain.
Research has been conducted comparing the recovery of patients who look out the window at gardens and those who only see buildings or a car park. Those who had a view of plants were generally discharged sooner. They had fewer side effects from surgery, needed less painkillers and made fewer demands of the nursing staff. This suggests even the sight of plants has health benefits.
Plants not only make an environment look more appealing but provide numerous health benefits. These are great reasons to give flowers or a plant when visiting someone in hospital.