In a joint study conducted by the University of Edinburgh OPENspace Research Centre and Heriot-Watt University, it was reported that, people’s stress levels are directly correlated with the amount of green space they have access to.
The researchers recorded stress hormone levels taken from saliva samples of people between 33 and 35 years of age who lived in Dundee in Scotland. Additionally, self-reported stress levels were recorded in a survey.
It was reported that people who lived in closest proximity or who had access to the largest green spaces were not only less stressed but were found to be better able to cope with adversity such as unemployment .
It was reported that as the amount of green space increased by a percent the stress levels reduced respectively.
This research is significant as the correlations were greatest between unemployment and green spaces over age and gender. This means that having access to green open spaces can potentially improve mental health issues such as anxiety and depression in the unemployed.
Due to the fact that unemployment is a growing problem in the current economic climate, this research could shed light of relatively easy ways to encourage mental wellbeing and stress relief.