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Brief Report

Relaxing Effect Induced by Forest Sound in Patients with Gambling Disorder

1
Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, National Hospital Organization Tokyo Medical Center, 2-5-1 Higashigaoka, Meguro-ku, Tokyo 152-8902, Japan
2
Department of Forest Resources, Kongju National University, 54 Daehak-ro, Yesan-eup, Yesan-gun, Chungcheongnam-do 32439, Korea
3
Center for Environment, Health and Field Sciences, Chiba University, 6-2-1 Kashiwa-no-ha, Kashiwa, Chiba 277-0882, Japan
4
Oishi Clinic, 4-41 Yayoicho, Naka-ku, Yokohama City, Kanagawa 231-0058, Japan
5
Le Verseau Inc., 3-19-4 Miyasaka, Setagaya-ku, Tokyo 156-0051, Japan
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contribute equally to this work.
Sustainability 2020, 12(15), 5969; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12155969
Received: 12 June 2020 / Revised: 10 July 2020 / Accepted: 22 July 2020 / Published: 24 July 2020
The number of people addicted to gambling has increased worldwide. They often suffer from debilitating medical conditions associated with stress or depression. This study examined the physiological and psychological reactions of gambling disorder (GD) patients while listening to high-definition forest or city sounds using headphones. In total, 12 Japanese male GD patients were exposed to high-definition forest or city sound waves for 1 min via headphones. Near-infrared spectroscopy of the prefrontal cortex was used to examine oxyhemoglobin (oxy-Hb) concentrations. Heart rate and heart rate variability are indicators of autonomic nervous function. We performed subjective evaluation via the modified version of the semantic differential (SD) method with the profiles of the mood states (POMS). Experiencing forest sounds led to substantial differences as opposed to listening to city sounds: (1) oxy-Hb levels of the bilateral prefrontal cortices were lower (2) the modified SD method resulted in increased comfortable and relaxed feelings, (3) the negative POMS subscale scores were significantly lower, indicating that negative emotions diminished markedly when patients listened to forest sounds. This is the first study to show that sounds of forest relaxed individuals physiologically and psychologically to minimize GD. View Full-Text
Keywords: forest therapy; landscape sounds; near-infrared spectroscopy; prefrontal cortex activity; psychological relaxation; shinrin-yoku forest therapy; landscape sounds; near-infrared spectroscopy; prefrontal cortex activity; psychological relaxation; shinrin-yoku
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MDPI and ACS Style

Ochiai, H.; Song, C.; Jo, H.; Oishi, M.; Imai, M.; Miyazaki, Y. Relaxing Effect Induced by Forest Sound in Patients with Gambling Disorder. Sustainability 2020, 12, 5969. https://doi.org/10.3390/su12155969

AMA Style

Ochiai H, Song C, Jo H, Oishi M, Imai M, Miyazaki Y. Relaxing Effect Induced by Forest Sound in Patients with Gambling Disorder. Sustainability. 2020; 12(15):5969. https://doi.org/10.3390/su12155969

Chicago/Turabian Style

Ochiai, Hiroko, Chorong Song, Hyunju Jo, Masayuki Oishi, Michiko Imai, and Yoshifumi Miyazaki. 2020. "Relaxing Effect Induced by Forest Sound in Patients with Gambling Disorder" Sustainability 12, no. 15: 5969. https://doi.org/10.3390/su12155969

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