Study finds how birdwatching helps students reduce distress, improve mental health – ET HealthWorld

North Carolina: bird watching may be an option for college Student trying to raise them mental health,

According to a recent study, people who nature based experiences Report high levels and low levels of well-being psychological discomfort Compared to those who do not do so. Birdwatching, in particular, produced euphoric effects, leading to major gains in subjective well-being and more. Tension Deficiency compared to performances of a more general nature, such as outings. Since birdwatching is a simple sport, the findings are positive for college students, who are among the people most likely to suffer from mental health problems.

“There has been a lot of research about well-being that has emerged during the pandemic that shows that teens and college-aged children are struggling the most,” said Nils Petersen, corresponding author of the study and professor of forestry and environmental resources. ” North Carolina State University, “Especially when you think about students and graduate students, it seems like they’re a group that is struggling in terms of access to nature and getting those benefits.

“Bird watching is one of the most ubiquitous ways that humans interact with wildlife globally, and college campuses provide a place where even more urban settings have access to that activity.”

To quantitatively measure subjective well-being, researchers used a five-question survey, known as the World Health Organization-Five Well-Being Index (WHO-5). The tool asks participants to rate statements about their well-being from zero to five, depending on how often they have felt that way over the past two weeks. For example, when prompted “I felt calm and relaxed,” a participant would mark zero for “any time” or five for “all the time.” Researchers can calculate a raw well-being score by simply adding up five responses, with zero being the worst possible quality of life and 25 being the best possible quality of life. Researchers divided participants into three groups: a control group, a group assigned five nature walks and a group assigned five 30-minute bird-watching sessions. While all three groups had improved WHO-5 scores, the birdwatching group started lower and ended higher than the other two. Using the STOP-D, a similar questionnaire designed to measure psychological distress, the researchers also found that nature engagement performed better than a control, with participants experiencing declines in distress in both birdwatching and nature excursions. Saw.

The study differs from some previous research, Peterson said, in that it compared the effects of birdwatching and nature engagement to a control group rather than a group that more actively experienced negative situations.

“One of the studies we reviewed in our paper compared people listening to birds to people listening to traffic sounds, and that’s not really a neutral comparison,” Peterson said. “We had a neutral control where we left people alone and compared it to something positive.”

The study supports the idea that bird watching improves mental health and opens up several avenues for future research. For example, future studies could investigate why bird watching helps people feel better or reduce the impact of race, gender, and other factors.

The paper, “Birdwatching associated with increased psychological well-being on college campuses: A pilot-scale experimental study,” is published in Environmental Psychology. Co-authors include Lincoln Larson, Aaron Hipp, Justin M. Beal, Catherine LeRose, Hannah DesRochers, Summer Lauder, Sophia Torres, Nathan A. Tarr, Kayla Stukes, Katherine Stevenson, and Katherine L. Martin, all of whom are from NC State.

  • Published on May 4, 2024 at 06:46 am IST

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