Is sleeping with plants in the bedroom dangerous?
For many people, the bedroom is a sanctuary, a place to rest and recharge after a long day. Our surroundings play a significant role in the quality of our sleep and our sense of well-being.
Our relationship with nature is ancestral, and it is no surprise that many of us want to bring a piece of it into our homes. After all, for nature lovers, a house without plants is not a home, right?!
Plants have the power to add beauty, freshness and vitality to any space, making it a more welcoming and harmonious place. However, there are legitimate concerns about how sleeping with plants in the bedroom may affect our health and sleep.
Is sleeping with plants bad for your health?
It's true that the debate about plants in the bedroom can leave many people confused. On the one hand, they are recognized for their purifying and calming properties, while, on the other, there is concern that they could be harmful to our health.
You've certainly heard that keeping plants in the bedroom is not safe “because they will absorb oxygen from the air while you sleep”.
In practical terms, plants carry out photosynthesis during the day, absorbing carbon dioxide and releasing oxygen. At night, they do the opposite: they absorb oxygen and release small amounts of carbon dioxide, but in such low quantities that do not even pose a risk to our health.
While some may question the beauty of bringing nature indoors, there are several benefits to be considered, which go far beyond aesthetics.
Many plants have the ability to filter the air, removing pollutants and harmful substances. A study done by NASA showed that, in small spaces, houseplants are capable of improve air quality, absorbing and breaking down common indoor air pollutants (such as formaldehyde, benzene and trichloroethylene).
Furthermore, having plants in the bedroom creates a feeling of relaxation and well-being. Through the power of aromatherapy, plants like lavender, for example, have the potential to relieve anxiety and promote better sleep, which in turn can reduce stress.
Still, there are some precautions to be taken…
It is essential to choose plants that are safe to have indoors, especially in bedrooms. Some plants can release toxic substances or allergens which can be harmful to our health (especially for those who have respiratory problems and/or allergies!). Therefore, before placing any plant in your room, you should do some research on it to ensure that it does not pose any health risk.
Additionally, if the room does not receive natural light enough, some plants may not survive or thrive. It is important to position them to ensure that they receive the right amount of light, avoiding direct and prolonged exposure to the sun.
A amount of water The amount of water needed varies from plant to plant, and it is essential not to overwater, as excess humidity can lead to the emergence of mold and fungi.
Lastly, it is advisable clean the leaves of plants regularly to remove dust and other particles that may accumulate. In addition to improving the health of the plant, allowing it to breathe better, it also improves the air quality in the room.
What does Feng Shui say about plants in the bedroom?
O Feng Shui - Chinese practice that focuses on harmony and balance of energies in environments - has specific recommendations regarding the presence of plants in the bedroom. According to Feng Shui principles, having plants in the bedroom can be beneficial, but there are some guidelines to consider:
- Choose healthy plants: If you want to have plants in your room, make sure they are healthy and well cared for. Withered or dead plants can create negative energy in the space.
- Prevents thorns: Plants with thorns, such as cacti, should not be placed in bedrooms as they can create a feeling of aggression and negativity.
- Use plants with smooth shapes: Plants with soft shapes and rounded leaves are more appropriate for creating a feeling of tranquility and softness in the bedroom.
- Avoid very large plants: Plants that are too large or bulky can overwhelm the space and create a feeling of oppression. It is preferable to choose small/medium sized plants for the bedroom.
- Maintains balance: Feng Shui emphasizes the importance of balance and symmetry. When positioning plants in your room, ensure that they are arranged in a balanced way and do not block the circulation of energy.
- Be careful with excesses: Having many plants in the bedroom can create an environment very charged with Yin energy (passive energy). It is important to balance the presence of plants with Yang elements (active energy) in the bedroom.
The best plants to have in the bedroom
Having plants in the bedroom not only adds a decorative touch to the space, but can also have significant positive impacts on sleep quality and respiratory health. For allergy sufferers - or even when the cold strikes! - sleeping with certain plants in the bedroom can be quite beneficial.
When it comes to relieving colds and nasal congestion, one of the most common folk practices suggests sleep with an onion in the room to relieve nasal congestion and other cold or flu symptoms. The idea behind this “traditional solution” argues that, supposedly, onions release chemical substances that help open the airways, making breathing easier at night.
However, there is no solid scientific evidence to prove whether sleeping with an onion in the bedroom is bad or not. One thing is certain: we all know how unpleasant the smell of onions is! This odor can cause eye and throat irritation, disrupting your sleep. Therefore, it’s best not to try it…
Plants that improve sleep and breathing
(Onions aside, let’s get back to plants…!)
Certain plant species can help improve sleep quality and alleviate some respiratory discomfort, as many of them purify the air and create a more relaxing environment.
Known for their calming, anti-inflammatory and air purifying properties, plants such as Eucalyptus, Lavender, Jasmine, Sword of Saint George, Aloe Vera or Orchid help improve nights' sleep, air quality and, consequently, breathing.
Just like us humans, plants also need to be well cared for and pampered. When choosing plants for the bedroom, make sure you choose species whose care needs fit with your lifestyle and personal preferences.
Remember to take good care of them, adjusting lighting and watering according to each one's specific needs, to ensure they remain healthy and contribute to better sleep.
Our team of Sleep Specialists provides personalized advice daily, adapted to the needs of each client who seeks us. If you are looking for this specialized help, you can contact us directly through:
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We are always available to help you… and your sleep 🧡