One of life’s unsung heroes is our pets. Without them knowing it, pets can drastically improve our mental and emotional health. Now more than ever, we’re aware of how our little friends help us cope during tragic times.
Companionship is Key for Maintaining Stable Mental and Emotional Health
Whether you’ve trained your pet to provide emotional support or not, a pet’s sheer presence is companionship.
Studies show that pet owners are less likely to suffer from depression than non-pet owners because of the mental and emotional support pets give us.
They’re magicians, I tell ya. Little mental health magicians with cute faces and smelly breath.
My family has seen this in action with our pets time and time again. Even yesterday my dog, Griffin, was there for me.
I felt anxious, emotionally exhausted, and had a headache. My dog came into my room and stayed there, giving me kisses, until I went to bed.
He almost always goes to bed when my parents do, but not last night. I think he knew I needed a buddy on my rocky mental health day.
Caring for a Pet Adds Structure to Your Day
When you bring a pet home, you are making a commitment to them, and yourself.
On days when you can’t bring yourself to do anything else, know that at least you took care of your pet. And that is an accomplishment your self-esteem and little friend will appreciate!
Everybody needs taking care of, no matter how big or small. Try to carve out some time for self-care alongside your pet’s daily routine so you can be in a healthier state of mind.
Touching Pets Improves Our Mental Health With “Sensory Stress Relief”
The term sensory stress relief is a fancy way of saying, “managing stress with touch and movement.”
When you’re cuddling your pet, you scientifically reduce stress. Studies show, spending as little as ten minutes petting a cat or dog lowers cortisol levels and leaves you with positive emotions.
Over time, your physical, mental, and emotional health will improve thanks to a pet’s affection.
There’s a reason dogs regularly visit nursing homes and colleges. More pets for them means less stress for you.
The way pets can improve our mental health is often hard to put into words, and these three reasons are just the tip of the iceberg.
Even though we do so much for them by giving them a home, feeding, and loving them, they will always do more for us.
How has your pet helped your mental health?