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  • Author or Editor: Ahmad Hassan x
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Reducing stress associated with technology and the use of electronics is a major issue among Chinese adults. However, no studies have investigated the effect of tactile stimulation of the feet. In this study, we investigated psychophysiological techniques for controlling stress by having participants touch natural materials with the sole of the foot. The study included 90 young Chinese adults with a mean (±SD) age of 21.2 ± 2.7 years. A crossover design was used to examine psychological and physiological differences between touching grass with the sole of the foot and touching wood (control) for 10 minutes. Physiological assessments included blood pressure measurements and electroencephalography, and psychological assessments included the Semantic Differential Method (SDM) and State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI). We observed significant decreases in systolic and diastolic blood pressures in the experimental condition compared with the control condition, along with increases in alpha and beta activities. SDM results indicated that participants were moderately comfortable, very relaxed, and experienced reduced anxiety after stimulation with grass compared with after the control condition. Mean attention and relaxation scores were also significantly higher in the experimental condition than in the control condition. Thus, our results suggest that touching grass with the sole of the foot can lower psychophysiological stress in adults.

Open Access

Advancements in electronic devices have led to increases in mental stress in modern adults, and removing this stress is crucial for mental health. The purpose of this study is to examine the psychophysiological benefits of contact with indoor plants. The effects of transplanting plants (horticultural activity) and work on a mobile phone (control activity) were assessed by blood pressure measurement, electroencephalography (EEG), the semantic differential method (SDM), and the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI). The SDM data showed that the subjects felt more relaxed, comfortable and natural, and experienced lower anxiety after the transplantation of plants than the control group. Participant’s total alpha and beta wave mean values increased over time during the transplantation task but decreased at the end of the control task. The mean meditation score was significantly higher after transplanting plants. Our study results indicate that contact with plants may minimize mental stress.

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