Stress Reducing Aquarium


BSNCF funded an aquarium in the new patient waiting room in the Greater Baltimore Medical Center.  The aquarium and aquatic life brought the calming effect of nature to thousands of patients and caregivers waiting for treatment, reducing stress and anxiety. We were thrilled to have an opportunity to build on our previous funding that refurnished the waiting room.

Intuitively, we know that the sound of running water is one of the most soothing environmental stimuli. Watching fish swim back and forth is stress and anxiety reducing. The gurgling sound of the bubbles add to the therapeutic effect of looking at the tank.

Studies have shown that there are health and emotional benefits that come from having an aquarium present. A 2004 study by Purdue examined the effects of the presence of an aquarium on patients awaiting therapy. The study investigated the effect of an aquarium on pre treatment anxiety, fear, frustration, and depression. While statistically significant differences in blood pressure and heart rate between the test and control were not found, the patients demonstrated a 12% reduction in self reported pre-treatment anxiety.