Veterans with PTSD are often at a loss for things to do when they return home. Moreover, the needed focus may be missing from their lives. As warriors, they had that focus but when they return home they find that they no longer have that to rely on. Gardening can help alleviate some of the stress and symptoms associated with PTSD, and if you are a vet, you should consider it for its therapeutic benefits.
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Since plants are non-judgmental and respond quickly to care, it is often easier to help veterans to connect on some level with plants that show the result of watering, weeding and concern. Results can be measured by merely by watching the growth happen. Not confident in your gardening abilities? Here are 10 foolproof plants to get your started.
Just the work of preparing the garden can give a vet a physical workout, known to help with psychological issues and with the symptoms of PTSD specifically. Digging and getting the soil ready is a major part of gardening and can be helpful in the healing process.
Another benefit of gardening for veterans is that vegetable gardening facilitates healthy eating. The brain is greatly affected by the things we eat, so growing foods like berries and leafy greens makes it easier to incorporate them into your diet.
Gardening offers a simple form of stress relief that is beneficial for everyone as well as veterans with PTSD. Nature heals, and gardening and plants have helped returning veterans, according to government studies done. Forests as well as therapy gardens have been used for studies regarding the healing effects of nature on veterans with PTSD.
Getting help from the VA
The VA offers several benefits to help veterans cope with PTSD and adjusting to civilian life. One little-known benefit is the VA home loan, which can help veterans buy homes in areas best suited to the lifestyle they want to build. Associated discounts can help you buy a home with land for gardening instead of a less expensive condo or duplex. With space for the garden, you can dig and plant to your heart’s content. The garden can also be a healing spot for the whole family, encouraging sharing of work and ideas as well as communication.
Whether you are a vet or not, gardening releases stress and joins families together. Vets can enjoy a simpler lifestyle that is more nature based and exclusive of the violence that is commonly found in modern entertainment. Peacefulness and tranquility are found in nature, and working with nature facilitates these benefits. Within the garden, peace and peace-of-mind can be found once again.