Therapy in Gardening

March 29, 2011 by  
Filed under Gardening

Brookgreen Gardens - sculpture garden

Image via Wikipedia

Most people garden because it is fun and we find joy in gardening. There are a lot of people who use gardening as a therapy tool. It might sound like a new concept however, therapy gardening has been going on for many decades. The benefits of garden therapy are overwhelming. Garden therapy results in a higher self-esteem and confidence for everyone who is participating. Many people benefit from this form of therapeutic benefits from gardening, such as people that are recovering from surgery, addictions, disabilities, and many health problems.

The most important benefit of using gardening therapy is that the normal ways of communication are not required. So people, who cannot talk, can communicate in their own way. This aspect of the therapy is important to stroke suffers who have communication difficulties, cerebral palsy or other health problems that prevent people from communicating. Garden therapy builds team work, self-confidence and self-esteem in those people who lack this ability while encouraging social interaction.

For substance abusers horticulture can give them a meaningful activity to participate in, in return will help slow down their addiction by creating skills to cope and learn how to work.

Juvenile offenders can benefit from garden therapy as well. They can improve their social bonding skills and improve attitudes because they have accomplished something, and it makes them feel good on the inside. It will help teach them how to attain personal success and job preparedness, and teach them how to work together as a team.

Garden therapy will help increase the ability to make decisions, and give self-control for mental patients.

Prison staff has used garden therapy improved the social interaction of the inmates, and helps the inmates to work with the staff with more understanding, and helps the inmates learn to work together instead of fighting with each other all the time.

It is very promising that studies done from mental hospitals and prisons have a consistently good report when they use garden therapy, the relationships between the staff and clients are better in both instances. The self-esteem and self-confidence of patients are higher when the doctors and staff members use garden therapy. There is also a higher rate of improvement for life skills, integrating the patients with the community, and helping the patients to get better. So far, there are not any negative comments about garden therapy.

It does a body good to be outside, breathing in fresh air and participating in physical labor instead of just sitting around in a cell or a hospital room. The fresh air can increase the chances of recovery.

With all the positive benefits to growing a garden, every one should be out there gardening.

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