Stock image. Photo credit: Yoann Boyer

Living next to water can be beneficial to your mental health

Studies over time have shown that people who live close to water had a decreased risk of dying young, a lower risk of being obese, and generally report greater mental health and wellbeing. Many studies actually show that living in a coastal region can improve our physical and mental health.
Being busy people, we usually count the days until our next vacation or mini-break. Most of us choose a beach, dam or lake to relax at.

Choosing a riverfront or seaside location for a vacation house or investment might have health and wealth benefits. Population density increases the risk of mental health issues. Overcrowding, pollution, urban violence, and fewer social support may be contributing issues as more people relocate to cities.
Many studies have proven that being close to nature and more specifically water, reduces stress and improves mood and mental health.

Even though being near water makes people feel better, no research has yet shown that it makes mental health disorders less common. In recent years, stressed-out city dwellers have been looking for refuge in “green spaces”. The positive effects of green spaces on physical and mental health are
often used to argue for more inner-city parks and easy-to-access woods. Less well-known are the benefits of “blue space,” which includes the sea and coastline as well as rivers, lakes, canals, waterfalls, and even fountains. However, science has shown for at least a decade that being near
water is good for both the body and the mind.

Living in the proximity to water, especially the sea, is associated with many positive measures of physical and mental wellbeing, from higher levels of vitamin D to better social relations. However, it appears that the propensity to visit is more important. It is said that persons who, for instance, visit the coast at least twice weekly are likely to have better physical and mental health. Studies show that two hours a week are definitely beneficial for numerous societal sectors. Even having a view of the ocean has been linked to enhanced mental wellness.

Every day, we are constantly exposed to sensory stimulation, and we unconsciously yearn for downtime. It has been discovered that being near water has a significant impact on relaxing our senses. When we are near water, we are giving our brains a vacation from sensory input. This may be because the waves are moving or because there is less stimulation all around us.

A coastal or riverbank setting can make all the difference to the capacity to relax, decompress, and provide a real means to “switch off” for individuals looking for a relaxing second home.

What then is it about water that is so beneficial to our state of mine?
There has been a lot of research on the link between health and water, but not much on why. Some studies believe that seeing water releases neurochemicals that increase blood flow to the brain and heart, which helps preserve physical and mental wellness.

There are a number of theories as to why:

• The colour blue – Blue’s peace, tranquillity, and serenity relieve anxiety and improve mental wellness. Aggression, blood pressure, and heart rate are reduced. Staring at the ocean changes brain wave frequency and induces modest meditation.

• Vacation – Taking a vacation usually means visiting the beach. The very idea of water invokes memories of a vacation.

• Air Quality – Water improves air quality. Water’s tranquility makes individuals pause and unwind more. Deeper breathing and cleaner air. Near water, more plants and vegetation filter the air.

• Exercise Opportunity – Water lovers tend to exercise there. Waterfronts are great for biking, walking, and running. It’s a tranquil place to contemplate or do yoga. Volleyball and football are additional beach-friendly aquatic sports.

• Multisensory Calm – The sound of water rushing or trickling, or as waves on a shoreline, is known to have calming benefits.

• Better Sleep – “Sleep” machines with white noise or running water have a use. These peaceful noises aid sleep and better sleep implies better health.

• Fast Track to Mindfulness – Water’s sights and noises can help you meditate more effectively, another mental health-boosting activity.

Living by water can have a profound impact on our physical and mental health. Properties by water will always be an ideal place for any investment, but with increasing evidence of the mental health benefits, demand is likely to continue to grow. If you want to break away for a weekend or even longer to restore your mental health, OppiDam might just be the answer you are looking for. So… How long? OppiDam Houseboats will make your next vacation unforgettable.

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