How Green Spaces Can Improve a Person’s Mental Health

A Luxurious House

With all the stress and pressure that we feel in this fast-paced world, it becomes difficult to keep up and take care of ourselves. The place where we expect to be the most relaxed at home, however, may not always provide us with the sanctuary that we need. But you shouldn’t always think that way.

Working with landscape professionals such as The NL Group can provide you and other homeowners out there with another benefit that goes beyond improving curb appeal. Starting and maintaining green spaces, for instance, can take care of your mental health.

It Reduces the Symptoms of Depression and Anxiety

More than 18% of the population has anxiety, while 6.9% may have depression. It takes more than having a garden or living near a green space to treat these conditions, but it can help significantly.

A possible proof is the study of the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Using the data provided by the SHOW survey, they asked 2,500 residents to rate their symptoms of anxiety and depression. They also assessed their level of stress. The results suggested that those who lived in neighborhoods with no more than 10% tree canopies were more likely to report depression, stress, and anxiety.

That’s not all. In another study, the positive mental effects of green spaces can last long. The University of Exeter researchers proved this by gathering data from two groups of people — one of them moved to an area with more green spaces, while the other transferred to a more urban area. The result? Those who moved close to a green space improved their mental health quickly. Furthermore, this effect lasted for about three years after they relocated.

Why Nature Draws Positive Effects on People

The relationship between people and nature has been a subject of research for years. There’s no definite reason people seem to be drawn to nature and how it can improve a person’s mood.

Many scientists, however, believe that nature can help reduce mental fatigue. It diverts the attention of a person from their concerns to natural sceneries. It blocks out negative thoughts, too. In the process, the beauty of the scenery creates positive feelings overall. These decrease the levels of stress as a result. Those who deal with anxiety and depression learn to cope better with their symptoms.

One doesn’t need to be in the wilderness to benefit from the green space. A garden, for one, can already improve your mood. You don’t even need to go far.