Large numbers of trees in residential neighborhoods have been linked to lower rates of depression

Life in the “concrete jungle” is constant stress. If you look outside your window every day and see gray streets and walls of houses, and not green trees and shrubs, this is a direct path to depression, scientists say. 

Higher numbers of trees in residential areas have been linked to decreased rates of depression 6774

It is known that green spaces in residential areas and their absence seriously affect the human psyche. Thus, American scientists have found that the number of trees and shrubs near houses greatly affects the quality of sleep of adolescents – in greener areas, schoolchildren fall asleep on average 18 minutes earlier and sleep better. Another study compared the mental health of people who were isolated during the first wave of the pandemic. It turned out that being able to look at trees and greenery outside the window is directly related to lower levels of depression and anxiety due to events in the world.

In a new study, scientists from the University of Leipzig assessed the relationship between the number of trees and their proximity to homes with the number of antidepressants prescribed to city residents. They analyzed data on the condition of more than 9.7 thousand residents of Leipzig, which was collected from 2011 to 2014, including prescriptions for antidepressants. They then compared them with data on the number and types of trees throughout the city.

It turned out that the greener the area, the less its residents took antidepressants. Notably, all types of trees within 100 meters of the home have a beneficial effect.

“We found that daily contact with nature, through a window view or outdoors, is very beneficial for mental health,” the study authors wrote. .

This relationship was especially pronounced in low-income neighborhoods. According to scientists, this is not surprising, since socially disadvantaged groups are more likely to suffer from depression. The authors of the study believe that their findings must be taken into account when planning developments and landscaping city streets.