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Using Plants To Avoid Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)

As the days grow shorter and the weather grows colder, it's not uncommon to feel a bit down or even suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). SAD is a type of depression that occurs during the winter months when there is typically less natural light available to us. It is thought to be caused by a disruption in the body's natural circadian rhythms, which regulate sleep, mood, and hormone production. Symptoms of SAD can include feeling sluggish, having low energy, craving carbs and sweets, and experiencing changes in sleep patterns and appetite.

Indoor houseplants

One way to help alleviate the symptoms of SAD is by bringing plants into your home or office space. Decorating with plants has been shown to have a number of mental and physical health benefits, including reducing stress, improving air quality, and increasing feelings of happiness and well-being. Here are a few ways that decorating with plants can help you avoid the winter blues and feel more energized and positive this season:

  1. Plants bring life and vitality to a space. Visually, plants can help brighten your mood and bring a sense of nature and life into a dull space. Whether you choose a flowering plant or a more unusual variety, adding plants to your decor can add visual interest and beauty to a space, making it more inviting and enjoyable.
  2. When planted and optimized correctly, plants can help purify the air. In addition to removing airborne toxins, plants also release moisture into the air, which can help to alleviate dryness and improve overall air quality. This can help you breathe easier and feel more refreshed, which is especially helpful during the winter months when the air inside can be dry and stagnant.
  3. Designing with greenery can help reduce stress. Studies have shown that being around plants can help lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol, as well as improve mood and increase feelings of relaxation.
  4. The presence of plants can improve focus and productivity. In addition to their stress-reducing properties, plants have been shown to improve concentration and memory, making them a great addition to a home office or workspace.
  5. Plants can also provide a sense of connection to nature, which can be especially important during the winter months when we may feel isolated and disconnected from the outdoors. Taking a few minutes each day to tend to your plants or simply sit and appreciate their beauty can provide a sense of grounding and help to alleviate feelings of loneliness and isolation.
Person tending to their plants

Decorating with plants is a natural and effective way to help boost your mood and reduce the symptoms of SAD. It is important to note that while plants can be a helpful addition to the treatment of SAD, they should not be used as a sole form of treatment. If you are struggling with SAD, it's important to speak with a healthcare professional to determine the best course of treatment for you. 

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