Friday Fact: Stress and Your Surroundings
By Christina Hughey, Horticulture Therapy Specialist
Since the beginning of mankind, we developed fight or flight response. An example is, if man encountered a mountain lion, he would have to decide whether to fight or run. People still face stressful situations today, and, the body still responds the same way. Stress can disturb sleep, weaken the immune system, elevate blood pressure, etc. Stress so often happens at hospitals (hearing bad news, waiting long periods of time, etc.). Fortunately, there is research focused around gardens in healthcare environments and their restoration from stress. One relevant theory is Roger Ulrich’s Stress Reduction Theory. Contact with nature has been noted to reduce stress, therefore we know that healthcare gardens just make sense.