The benefits of owning a fish tank

Benefits of Owning a Fish Tank

Owning a fish tank is sometimes a difficult task. There’s regular cleaning and maintenance to be done, supplies to be purchased, fish to be fed. So why bother? What do fish really add to your life?

The answer is a lot. Fish tanks have numerous benefits to those who own and interact with them. Fish may not be the most interactive companions, but they add a lot to whatever environment they’re in. Here are some of the main benefits of owning a fish tank.

Aquarium Benefits for Owners

Aquarium therapy

Within the field of animal therapy, the positive physiological and psychological effects of fish tanks have been the subject of several studies. Fish tanks have been shown to reduce stress and anxiety and improve your mood. Simply spending a few minutes watching fish lowers your heart rate and blood pressure.

The thinking is that the combination of water sounds and the constant movement of fish swimming stimulates happy hormones in the brain. These hormones have a calming effect on the body and mind. Aquarium therapy has been tested in various groups, from children with ADHD and people with Alzheimer’s, to dental surgery patients and army veterans. Any size tank will have positive effects, but the bigger the tank, the greater the impact.

A learning tool for children

Fish tanks aren’t just pets for children; they’re also educational tools. Despite being one of the least hands-on pets, children can still play an active role in caring for fish. Fishkeeping builds responsibility and creates a sense of accomplishment. Fish tanks make the distant marine environment accessible, providing valuable experiential learning opportunities.

There is truth in the clichéd image of a child crying over their dead fish – fish often are a child’s first experience of loss and death. Younger children can learn new vocabulary and the biology of underwater animals. Older children can develop their critical thinking skills by understanding and measuring water temperature and chemical levels (nitrates, ammonia etc.). For children’s tanks, just remember to choose species that are resilient, attractive and calm. Danios, dwarf gouramis, neon tetras, Siamese fighting fish and guppies all make great fish for kids.

Good feng shui

A properly placed and cared for aquarium can bring prosperity and good luck into your home. In feng shui, a Chinese philosophy of harmony between people and their environment, fish tanks represent growth, wealth and life. Fish tanks contain all five elements of feng shui – water, earth, fire (brightly coloured fish), metal and wood. Taken together, these elements symbolise the perfect balance of chi, or energy. Just remember to consult a feng shui chart before placing a fish tank; the wrong placement could bring negativity into the home instead.

Beautiful décor

Aquariums bring nature inside, and like plants, they make any space feel more like home. Tanks themselves come in all shapes and sizes and can be chosen to suit almost any home environment. Aquascaping can make fish tanks truly one-of-a-kind, with aquarium accessories and decorations, plants and coral. Large aquariums can be the focal point of a living room, whereas small fish tanks can add a relaxed touch to a home office. Fish are also relatively low maintenance, making them excellent pets for those who want a beautiful addition to their home but have less space or time.

Anti-ageing chemicals

This one is a bit out there, but recent studies have shown the anti-ageing effects of methylene blue, a non-toxic, and water-soluble chemical used to clean fish tanks. Methylene blue can repair the damage ageing causes to cell mitochondria. This is good news for older fish owners, but also has wider-reaching impacts for children suffering from the rare genetic illness progeria, which causes premature ageing and death. Methylene blue is amazing for fish tanks, serving as a safe disinfectant, and treating many common fish ailments such as nitrite and ammonia poisoning. Now that its anti-ageing properties are being discovered, you might find yourself cleaning your tank a bit more frequently!