Can Plants Really Benefit Your Sleep?
More and more people are becoming plant parents and sprucing up (get it? Oh plant humor) their homes with some of the best natural decor planet Earth can offer. Plants are an integral part of feng shui — the Chinese art of bringing balance and harmony into a space or environment — as they have a way of brightening up a room and our moods.
Aside from making us feel happy, certain plants also provide health benefits with their ability to purify the air and promote feelings of ultimate relaxation. That’s why it’s extremely helpful for your sleep and general well-being to keep your bedroom furnished with our fellow earthly cohabitants. Here are some of the best plants that’ll work alongside your cozy bed to contribute towards your beauty rest, and help you wake up in the morning feeling positive, refreshed, and ready to take on your day.
A Note About COVID
As we face uncertain times, many people find that stress and anxiety have a major impact on their ability to get a good night’s sleep. We find that plants not only promote sleep, but can add a sense of purpose and connection to nature to help further support mental wellness. For more tips on getting a better night’s sleep during difficult times, please see our Sleep During a Crisis guide, our reach out to your medical provider.
The Best Plants For Better Sleep
You’ve probably seen or heard of lavender essential oils or lavender bed sheet spritzer before. Interestingly enough, lavender has been popularly used for thousands of years in aromatherapy, cooking, or for perfume. If you were to walk around Bed, Bath, and Body Works, you’d surely see your fair share of lavender scented products displayed on the shelves. The aroma of this delicate, light purple flower has been shown to lower heart rate, blood pressure, and relieve stress, making it a perfect addition for your bedroom to induce sleepiness.
Jasmine is a dainty white flower with a pale yellow center, and its sweet smelling scent has been shown to promote a more restful sleep. In a study by Dr. Bryan Raudenbush and his colleagues at Wheeling Jesuit University, participants who slept in jasmine scented rooms received higher quality sleep than those who didn’t, and even reported feeling more awake in the afternoon. As an added plus, they’re easy to take care of so you don’t have to lose sleep questioning whether or not you’re a good plant parent.
3.) Spider Plant
This plant got its name from its long, spider leg looking leaves. In a study done by NASA on the health benefits of having plants inside a household, the spider plant reigned victorious at removing 90% of formaldehyde in the air, a potential cancer-causing chemical commonly found in products like fillers and adhesives. It also takes on other odors or unwanted fumes in the air, allowing you to sleep more soundly throughout the night.
4.) Aloe Vera
We’ve always turned to aloe vera for its soothing effect on sun burns after spending a little too much time at the beach, but this trusty succulent can also be used as an air purifier in your bedroom. It absorbs carbon dioxide and releases oxygen during the nighttime, improving the air quality in your room while you sleep. For this reason, it’s not a huge surprise that NASA named it one of the top plants for boosting the quality of air.
The rose-like gardenia flower is harder to care for compared to some of the other plants on this list, but if you’re up for the challenge, it might be worth your while as its sleep-inducing powers have been said to be more effective than Valium. In a study where researchers gave participants crocetin, an active compound in the gardenia flower, results showed that those who took the crocetin encountered less sleep interruptions during the night than those who took a placebo.
The valerian plant is a cluster of miniature blossoms and almost resembles the popular baby’s breath flower you usually see bundled in with rose bouquets. For centuries, valerian root has been used to help cure insomnia, and dates back to the times of ancient Romans and Egyptians. Turns out, they were actually onto something as research has shown that just the pure scent of the flower is relaxing enough to lull you to sleep.
7.) English Ivy
If you’re looking to decorate your bedroom with a beautiful, cascading ivy plant, we suggest english ivy. Not only does it give an elegant, yet rustic look to a space, but the American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology says english ivy removed 94% of airborne feces and 78% of airborne mold spores. This makes it an ideal plant for just about anyone to have in their bedroom, but especially folks who struggle with sleep due to allergies.