The transformation of vacant urban land into green spaces significantly reduces feelings of depression and improves overall mental health for surrounding residents, according to a new study.
The findings impact cities in the United States, where 15 percent of the country is considered "vacant" and often spoiled or trash-and-feral, according to researchers from the Perelman School of Medicine and the School of Arts & Sciences at the University of Pennsylvania Vegetation.
The research team measured the sanity of Philadelphia Residents before and after nearby undeveloped land were converted into green spaces, as well as residents living near uninhabited, abandoned land and those just receiving garbage disposal.
They found that people within a quarter league of green broke lots had a 41
The findings complement the growing body of evidence that revitalized spaces in contaminated urban areas can contribute to improving safety and health, such as: B. Reduction of crime, violence and stress.
The latest research by the same research team in February revealed a 29 percent reduction in gun violence near treated batches.  "Dilapidated and undeveloped areas are factors that could expose residents to an increased risk of depression and stress and explain why socioeconomic disparities persist in mental illness," said lead author Eugenia C. South, MD, MSHP, assistant professor of emergency medicine and member of the Center for Emergency Care and Policy Research in Pennsylvania
"What these new data show is that structural changes, such as greening lots, have a positive impact on the health of those living in those neighborhoods In a cost-effective and scalable manner, not only in Philadelphia, but also in other cities with the same damaging environmental environment. "
For the study, 541 vacant plots of land in Philadelphia were randomly assigned to one of three study arms: Greening Intervention, Refuse-cleaning intervention or control group without int
The greening intervention involved removing garbage, sorting the land, planting new grass and a small number of trees, and installing a low wood edge fence and regular monthly maintenance.
Garbage disposal included garbage removal, limited grass mowing where possible, and regular monthly maintenance.
The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society's LandCare program carried out greening, refuse cleaning, and maintenance
Two sets of Mental Health Preventive and Post-Intervention Measurements were conducted between 342 people 18 months before revitalization and 18 months later.
Resea The Kessler Psychological Distress Scale (K6), a widely used community screening tool, was used by the riders to assess the prevalence of serious mental illness in the community. The participants were asked to state how often they felt nervous, hopeless, restless and depressed, that everything was laborious and worthless.
The results were most pronounced when looking at residents only in neighborhoods below the poverty line "There were significantly fewer near green plots – more than 68 percent, the researchers report.
Analysis The garbage clean-up compared to no intervention did not show any significant changes in self-reported mental health, "the researchers said.
"The lack of change in these groups is likely because the garbage collection sites did not create additional green space," said co-author John MacDonald, Ph.D., a professor of criminology and sociology at Penn.
The results confirm that exposure to more natural environments can be part of mental health recovery, especially for people living in stressful and chaotic urban environments.
Adding Green Space to Neighbors According to the researchers, infants should be considered alongside individualized treatments for treating mental health problems in low-resource communities
In addition, greening is an affordable approach that is approximately $ 1,600 per vat Plot and costs $ 180 per year.
For this "The greenfield clearance is an attractive option for decision-makers who are concerned with urban rot and health promotion," the researchers said.
"Greenland is one very cost-effective and scalable way to improve cities and promote people's health in their neighborhoods, "said senior author Charles C. Branas, Ph.D., Department of Epidemiology at Columbia University and associate professor in the department for biostatistics and epidemiology at Penns Perelman School of Medicine.
"While psychotherapeutic therapies will always be an important aspect of treatment and the places where people live, work and play, resuscitate broader population effects on mental health outcomes."
The study was published in JAMA Network Open
Source: University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine