The great outdoors? Exploring the mental health benefits of natural environments

Pearson, David G. and Craig, Tony (2014) The great outdoors? Exploring the mental health benefits of natural environments. Frontiers in Psychology. ISSN 1664-1078

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Abstract

There is growing evidence to suggest that exposure to natural environments can be associated with mental health benefits. Proximity to greenspace has been associated with lower levels of stress (Thompson et al., 2012) and reduced symptomology for depression and anxiety (Beyer et al., 2014), while interacting with nature can improve cognition for children with attention deficits (Taylor and Kuo, 2009) and individuals with depression (Berman et al., 2012). A recent epidemiological study has shown that people who move to greener urban areas benefit from sustained improvements in their mental health (Alcock et al., 2014). In this paper we critically review evidence indicating that such mental health benefits are associated with the so-called “restorative” properties of natural environments. In particular we focus on the claim that interaction with (or just passive perception of) natural scene content can be linked to the restoration of limited-capacity attentional resources, in comparison to similar exposure to urban or built scene content.

Item Type: Journal Article
Additional Information: Citation: Pearson, D. G. and Craig, T., 2014. The great outdoors? Exploring the mental health benefits of natural environments. Frontiers in Psychology, 5:1178..
Faculty: Faculty of Science & Technology
Depositing User: Mr I Walker
Date Deposited: 13 Jun 2016 09:08
Last Modified: 04 Jul 2017 09:46
URI: http://arro.anglia.ac.uk/id/eprint/612734

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