Improve Your Mental Health with Indoor Plants

by jiatongma

Aug 11 2022

Indoor plants have a tremendous benefit for your mental health. Have you ever wondered why it’s recommended to go outdoors more often for good mental health? While that’s a multifactorial process, plants largely contribute to being the key reason behind the rejuvenating properties of a walk in a park, spending evenings in the countryside, or a hike in the forest. Keeping a few indoor plants in your house can result in important benefits for your mental health. 

Indoor plants are very engaging for the senses, especially the senses of sight, smell, and touch. Channeling your focus to these senses can be very helpful as it can help to alleviate anxiety, depression, and insomnia. 

The benefit of indoor plants

Houseplants can aid in battling depression and anxiety

Indoor plants release fragrant chemicals, which along with the smell of germinating spores from watering plants, called petrichor – the same smell when it rains on an arid land. This releases endorphins in your brain, which makes you feel good. Moreover, a particular strain of the mycobacterium species present in plant soils, called Mycobacterium vaccae, triggers the release of serotonin, which is the neurotransmitter responsible for making us happy. Hence, this helps to improve our mood and combat anxiety.

Indoor plants improve productivity and creativity

Many research studies have proven the landslide difference in the performance and creativity of people of all sorts of careers and backgrounds, with a group of individuals with constant exposure to indoor plants and a control group with no exposure to plants. This advocates the need to have indoor plants at home and the workplace for heightened efficiency.

Houseplants reconnect us to nature

Good exposure to dirt and soil is great for connecting us to nature and helping us realign our purpose and unanimity with the planet we live on. Active interactions with the house plants/ indoor plants have known to produce the same stress-reducing and calming effects as spending quality time in the forest.

Tending to houseplants mirrors our self-care behavior 

Plants are living species, and just like us, they have needs that should be fulfilled in order for them to thrive. They need to be timely watered, sprayed with the necessary insecticides and fertilizers. In turn, these processes produce excellent effects on our mental health. First, it creates a bond – a relationship with the plant where we value its existence, and harboring positive feelings ultimately translates into them getting applied to ourselves as well. We tend to look after ourselves just like we look after our plants. Moreover, the process of tending to the needs of the plants inculcates a remarkable sense of discipline in our lives, making us more responsible as individuals. 

When new developments take place in your indoor plants, such as a new bud sprouting, or a flower blooming, it creates an intense sense of euphoria and ecstasy. Just like a parent feeling proud of their child’s success, the plant was nurtured so well that it reached a developmental milestone. 

Indoor plants can boost your home’s air quality

Houseplants create a microenvironment, or a mini ecosystem within the house, enhancing it in the best way possible. For starters, they help to eliminate toxins and pollutants in the air inside your home/ apartment/ workspace while also humidifying the air, preventing your skin and respiratory system from desiccating. Moreover, houseplants can even reduce the symptoms and episodes of asthma, as non-flowering plants benefit breathing and respiratory system in general and promote healthy levels of oxygen while minimizing hazardous gases like Benzene. 

Recommended types of indoor plants

Every plant is not meant to be planted inside the house. You may be unaware of this, but there are certain plants that are certain non-environment friendly plants, while some are actually deadly plants. So, you need to read instructions and warnings on which plants should or should not be planted, especially indoors, so that you don’t end up barking the wrong tree (pun intended).

You can have indoor flowering plants, indoor plant stands, indoor plants in your living room, etc. Here are some of the best indoor plants that you can keep in Singapore:


Succulents are the invincible, nigh-unkillable nature. Think of them as the weeds of indoor plants. They are happy to grow in any pot size available, making them best suited to be desk plants. Specializing in storing water, so they do not need to be tended frequently for the sake of watering and barely require any sun at all! As long as you adhere to the recommended amount of watering for these plants, they can take pretty good care of themselves and thrive. Examples of succulents include aloe vera and flowering cacti.


Palms make up the staples of Singapore’s jungles. They impart a tropical vibe and an alluring sight for households, making them a great choice for living room indoor plants. One of the most common palms is the Yellow Palm, a quite hardy plant that can thrive in the sun and shade while purifying the surrounding air.


Ferns have a lush green appearance with small petite leaves. They thrive best in indirect sunlight and humid environment, making them the best for washrooms, kitchens, garages, etc. Though these plants love moist soil, an easy trick to prevent plant death from over-watering is to ensure that the soil is dry before watering the plant. A popular choice for ferns is the Boston Ferns.

Money Plants

Money plants are notorious for their reputation for their longevity and robust nature and are dubbed the Devil’s Ivy for how hard they are to kill. It stays lusciously green even in somber pitch darkness. There are plenty of Money Plant species, such as the Jade Plant, Chinese Money Plants, and Swiss Cheese Money Plant. However, do note that if you have furkids in the house, hang the money plants high enough so they’re a safe distance away because money plants are toxic to them.

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