Urban Residential Tree Canopy and Perceived Stress Among Pregnant Women

A recent study featuring PISC Senior Scholar Eugenia South, MD, MSPH, and Executive Committee Member Zachary F. Meisel, MD, MPH, MA, evaluated the impact urban residential tree canopy has on the perceived stress of pregnant women. 1,294 pregnant women in Philadelphia were analyzed through the Motherhood & Microbiome pregnancy cohort. Tree canopy was measured within areas of 100-meter and 500-meter radii buffers. Results indicated that tree canopy does not affect stress experienced by pregnant women. However, further data analysis revealed deviations among participants: women with a history of anxiety or depression experienced significantly less stress in residential areas with greater tree canopy density. These findings highlight the potential urban residential tree canopy has to reduce stress for patients with mental health conditions.

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