How Nature Improves Mental Health

Mental health has been scientifically proven to reduce stress levels and improve mental health. Recent studies have concluded that being out in nature, looking at a picture of nature, or listening to sounds of nature all help decrease stress levels and provide a sense of tranquility. Constant exposure to nature can help those recovering from addiction or suffering from mental health issues improve their quality of life over time.

Studies have shown that people who live within a mile of nature have been proven to show fewer signs of depression, anxiety, and migraines, which are a few of the reasons why people turn to drugs. Those who spend less time in nature and more time in front of television, computer, and cell phone screens, are more likely to suffer from depression, feelings of isolation, and loss of empathy. When people experience these negative emotions, they’re more likely to take drugs for feelings of euphoria and relief. The problem with turning to drugs to reduce stress is that after a while the body requires higher doses to reproduce those feelings, which makes people become addicted.

How Nature Improves Focus

Studies also show that being exposed to nature can increase focus and attention, even if it’s just viewing a tree from a window. Nature’s calming effects help people relax and sharpen their performance no matter what they’re focused on. Taking the time to go for a walk in nature every day rather than taking a walk through an urban area helps decrease anger and blood pressure.

How Nature Encourages Connection

Why Recovering Addicts Should Spend Time in Nature People recovering from substance abuse disorder should spend time in nature because it encourages social connections and boosts self-esteem. Many rehabilitation centers and alternative treatment centers are located in environments surrounded by nature to promote mental, physical, and emotional healing. When groups of people are recovering together at facilities, being in nature creates stronger bonds and an increased ability to deal with life’s circumstances. Nature also increases empathy, which increases the ability to connect with one another.

In fact, studies of the brain were conducted using MRI machines to measure its activity. When the participants involved viewed images of nature, the areas of the brain associated with empathy and love lit up. However, when participants viewed images of urban areas, the areas of the brain associated with fear and anxiety lit up.

Recovering from substance abuse disorder is not easy, but it’s possible. Spending time in nature has proven to help promote healing over time, especially for those struggling with addiction and mental illness disorder.

Alternative Treatment Centers in Tennessee

At Discovery Place, we are a nontraditional alternative treatment center located in Burns, Tennessee that was designed to assist addicts with their recovery process. We offer various programs tailored to meet the needs of our patients no matter what stage of their journey they’re on. Some of our programs include a 30-Day Alternative Residential Addiction Recovery Program and a Long-Term Alternative Addiction Recovery Program. If you would like to schedule a free consultation with us, call us at (800) 725-0922.


  • Discovery Place was the answer for my son. He did the 90 day and then the step down program and sober living. We give this organization 10 stars. They met my son where he was …emotionally, mentally, physically. They helped him put his life back on track. Discovery Place employees care about their guests. If your son, brother, nephew, grandson or husband needs excellent supportive care THIS is indeed the facility.

    Kim Morton
    Alumni Parent
  • I have remained sober and it is because of DP. DP is the best place there is, hands down. I keep everyone there in my prayers, and I encourage everyone there to take what they are practicing and do it in their lives, after.

    Roy Mantelli
  • Over the past year, I’ve been putting into actin what Discovery Place taught me, and I have experienced a complete perspective change of the world, and the people in it. I get to be a man of service and love today, and for that I am grateful to Discovery Place.

    Matt Kassay
  • Discovery Place means the world to me. They showed me the tools that I’ve tried to use everyday in my life to think less often of myself, and more frequently of others. I am learning to lend a hand when I am able and to have a honest and humble relationship with God and the people around me. Not only am I clean and sober, but also I am happy and fulfilled.

    Tommy Parker
  • Discovery Place and the men who work there made recovery attractive, and more importantly, fun. There is strength in the struggle. I am forever grateful for my time at Discovery Place.

    Creed McClellan
  • When I got to Discovery Place my whole life was in shambles, but I didn’t know it. I spent 6 months in their programs, participating in all three phases, and was met with kindness and love all along the way. It is unbelievable to me, where I am now relative to where I was when I arrived at DP.

    Lance Duke
  • I can never say enough good things about Discovery Place and the people who work there. Before checking in to DP, I was out of options and out of answers. Fortunately, Discovery Place has a solution. Taking suggestions from the staff at DP saved my life, and as a result, I’m now more content and hopeful about life. I’m grateful for Discovery Place showing me how to live a healthy life so that I can become a better man and help the next guy.”

    Tyler Buckingham

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