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Stress Recovery during Exposure to Nature Sound and Environmental Noise
Gösta Ekman Laboratory, Department of Psychology, Stockholm University, SE-106 91 Stockholm, Sweden
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 26 January 2010; in revised form: 20 February 2010 / Accepted: 5 March 2010 / Published: 11 March 2010
Abstract: Research suggests that visual impressions of natural compared with urban environments facilitate recovery after psychological stress. To test whether auditory stimulation has similar effects, 40 subjects were exposed to sounds from nature or noisy environments after a stressful mental arithmetic task. Skin conductance level (SCL) was used to index sympathetic activation, and high frequency heart rate variability (HF HRV) was used to index parasympathetic activation. Although HF HRV showed no effects, SCL recovery tended to be faster during natural sound than noisy environments. These results suggest that nature sounds facilitate recovery from sympathetic activation after a psychological stressor.
Keywords: soundscape; nature sounds; environmental noise; skin conductance level; heart rate variability; stress recovery
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MDPI and ACS Style
Alvarsson, J.J.; Wiens, S.; Nilsson, M.E. Stress Recovery during Exposure to Nature Sound and Environmental Noise. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2010, 7, 1036-1046.
Alvarsson JJ, Wiens S, Nilsson ME. Stress Recovery during Exposure to Nature Sound and Environmental Noise. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2010; 7(3):1036-1046.
Alvarsson, Jesper J.; Wiens, Stefan; Nilsson, Mats E. 2010. "Stress Recovery during Exposure to Nature Sound and Environmental Noise." Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 7, no. 3: 1036-1046.