Although some people may find it hard to believe that keeping tropical fish in your home or office can improve the quality of your life, it’s actually something that has been well studied and proven to be true.
From our point of view it’s easy to see why. We actually feel the benefits on a daily basis when interacting with our fish, and if you already have an aquarium in your home, you probably know the feelings we are referring to.
Plus, humans naturally have an innate attraction to water. It’s hardwired within our DNA. After all, we can not survive without the stuff. It hydrates us, it helps us grow our food and it provides balance to the world around us. Knowing that, it’s easy to see why we have such a positive response to the presence of water in our surroundings.
So with all that in mind, let’s take a look at some of the proven health benefits of keeping an aquarium in your home or office.
They Reduce Stress
This one is pretty obvious if you have ever spent time staring into a fish tank. Their therapeutic, meditative and somewhat hypnotic ora can grab your attention for a while, helping to switch your state of mind from frantic and busy to peaceful and calm.
The effects are similar to those “Sounds of the rainforest” recordings that are designed to reduce stress, improve sleep and improve your quality of life.
The presence of nature in your surroundings can have a dramatic effect on stress levels, so don’t be afraid to make your aquarium the centerpiece of the room. The more time you can spend engaged and fascinated with the underwater world, the healthier you will be.
They Help To Reduce Anxiety
When we are overwhelmed with anxiety, it simply means that we are lost within our own mind. We overthink and over analyse everything to the point where we are constantly afraid that something bad is about to happen. It’s a horrible feeling.
Overcoming anxiety isn’t a walk in the park, and everyone experiences and deals with anxiety in different ways, but spending time lost in the underwater world of an aquarium can help to divert your focus, attention and thoughts to something outside of your own head, temporarily distracting you from all of the worries that you might have.
The more time you can spend in this almost meditative state, the better you will adapt to being present to the moment and free from your own anxious thoughts. Aquariums work so well because of how captivating and fascinating they are. They demand your attention and allow you to get lost in a world that’s not your own. It’s therapeutic.
Lowers Blood Pressure
Studies from the University of Plymouth have shown that staring at a fish tank can reduce heart rates up to 7%, which is great news for those who suffer with high blood pressure or a high resting heart rate.
The study found that participants who stared at an empty aquarium with rocks and plants saw an average decrease in heart rate of 3%, whereas when fish were added to the mix, the reduction increased to an average of 7%.
Ever wondered why you always find aquariums in a dentist’s office?
It turns out it’s not just for decoration. The presence of an aquarium in a dental waiting room has shown to decrease anxious thoughts, reduce stress and even reduce the amount of pain felt during dental procedures, according to this scientific report.
So the next time you’re sat waiting for your dental checkup, don’t focus on the sounds of drilling and the groans from other patients, take a look at the fishies instead!
Can Help Hyperactive Children
Keeping an aquarium in a child’s bedroom is a great way to help them feel comfortable at night and more aware of their surroundings.
All of the stress reducing and calming benefits of aquariums can also be felt by hyperactive children. The presence of an aquarium can reduce hyperactivity in children as well as improving their sleeping patterns and overall curiosity and appreciation for the natural world.
Understanding how an aquarium can reduce stress and anxiety, it’s easy to see how beneficial it can be to indulge in some underwater therapy at night before you hit the sack. The calming nature of an aquarium can help you fall asleep faster and if you decide to keep an aquarium in your bedroom, the sounds can act as a form of “white noise” in the same way that a fan or the sound of rainfall would.
Don’t have access to an aquarium at night? Simply watching aquarium videos on your phone can help you fall into a deeper, and longer slumber. Just don’t forget to turn down the brightness and block out the blue light or that will just make things worse.
A fascinating scientific study out of Purdue University has shown that the presence of a fish tank in homes that care for Alzheimer’s patients can improve mood, alertness, appetite and can reduce aggressive behavior.
The study found that patients who were exposed to aquariums on a daily basis were less likely to act irrationally and aggressively, were more calm and alert throughout the day, and ate on average up to 21% more food.
Along with the positive effects on blood pressure, stress and anxiety, what other reasons do you need to persuade your elder relatives to consider adding an aquarium to their homes. The earlier the benefits can be experienced, the better the quality of life.
Great For Productivity and Creativity
The last benefit that is worth mentioning is the apparent increase in productivity and creativity that aquariums can offer. The visual stimulation of a fish tank can help to improve your creative abilities and the therapeutic, stress-reducing effects can help you to be more productive in whatever you are trying to focus on.
So there are 8 surprising health benefits of keeping an aquarium in your home or office. Were you surprised by any of them?
Don’t worry about what size aquarium you need to reap the benefits, or how many fish you need, or what species of fish will help you the most. That’s not what it’s all about. Keeping fish is a hobby first and foremost, it’s something that needs your time and attention. The health benefits are nothing more than a positive side effect.
It doesn’t matter whether it’s a 300-gallon super-aquarium or a 5-gallon nano-tank on your office desk. The health benefits are still the same.
2 thoughts on “8 Surprising Benefits Your Aquarium Has On Your Health”
I used to keep at least two 20 gallon aquariums as a teenager. One day I took and job, found myself in college and did not have time for the Jewel fish I loved to breed. Now retired, I was in a new doctors office one day for anxiety. His waiting room and office had no less than four 125 gallon tanks, all with Convict Cichlids!!
A light went off in my head. In no time I had me a 20 gallon long with tiger barbs, glo fish and live plants. My anxiety started to ease. The Fish store I purchased where I purchased my fish had a close out price on a 55 gallon kit including stand. I took it!
The 55 was loaded with plant substrate and stocked with many different plants, rocks and fossils.
My plan is to purchase a pair of Convict Cichlids and let them have their way with the tank.
I retired from being an analytical chemist, and look forward to documenting the water quality of my tanks.
Thank You for a great article.
Thanks for sharing your story, Timothy ?