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    1By Renu Kumar

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    Running head: THE EFFECTS OF POPULATION DENSITY AND NOISE The Effects of Population Density and Noise  Renu Kumar  PSY/460  November 3, 2013 Christine Hander The  Effects of Population Density and Noise Population density and noise  can have many  effects  on individuals.  Population density  is  the  amount  of  people, which live in a particular area. Along with population density, comes noise; noise is typically an unwanted distraction. In this paper the subject to discuss is  the concepts of territoriality, privacy, and personal space; examine how the concepts of territoriality, privacy, and personal space have become increasingly important as  populations become  denser; clarify the effect nature has on individuals living in urban environments, describe the concept of noise and examine the effect it has on individuals; and examine strategies that can be used to reduce noise in the workplace or in the living environment. Concepts of  Territoriality,  Privacy, and Personal Space  Territories are areas  marked and defended by their owners  and  often  used for life- sustaining activities  (Territoriality, 2004). The most common example of a person's territory would be his or her home because one tends to personalize and defend what is theirs. A person identifies themselves with his or her territory and any threat to that territory feels like a threat to themselves (Territoriality, 2004). A person feels connected to his or her territory and sees it as a means to satisfying his or her needs within society. Privacy is the selective control of access to oneself and group (Privacy, 2004). A person has the ability to decide who to allow in his or her territory or personal space. A person's  personal space  describes  the emotionally tinged zone around the human body that  a person feels  is  his or her  space  and can be described as  a soap bubble, a snail shell, and an aura around the human body  (Personal Space, 2004). As populations become denser  the concepts of territoriality, privacy, and personal space have become increasingly important. As  a  population  grows a person will display territorial behavior and have the need for more privacy and personal space as a means to escape the pressures of the environment and noise. A person within his or her territory are more confident, feel that they have control, and are more apt to fight back than if they were in someone else's territory. The reason is because a person feels connected to his or her territory and sees it as a means to satisfying his or her needs within society. Some of the benefits of human territorial behavior are access to the resources within that territory, status, personal space, privacy, and preserves one's identity. Typically a person is able to decide who to allow in his or her territory and when, which allows a person to have privacy when it is needed. The drawbacks of human territorial behavior are becoming overly protective of the territory can lead to antisocial behavior, loneliness, and can cause hostile behavior. A person may become obsessed with protecting his or her territory and alienate those around them. The Effect of Nature Zoos, parks, and gardens provide those living an urban environment the opportunity to develop an environmental identity that is nurtured rather than inhibited (Clayton & Myers, 2009). Zoos, parks, and gardens enhance a person’s interest in animals and the nature around them. Nature allows a person to get away from noise and the denser population. Direct contact with nature for those living in an urban environment can lead to an increase in mental health and psychological development. Nature environments like zoos, parks, and gardens provide a person with a place to relax, a way to reduce stress, restore mental clarity, increase one’s sense of well- being, and improve performance and physical health (Davis, 2008). Concept of Noise Noise is unwanted sound and what may be a wonderful sound to one person may be noise to another. According to Noise: effects on health (2007) noise can cause stress, impair mental health; affect one’s sleep quality, performance, and cognition. A person whom is exposed to long periods of noise can become stressed, which can lead to higher blood pressure and heart rate and affect a person’s overall health. Those who are sensitive to noise may have a hard time falling asleep and staying asleep for any length of time. If a person does not get enough sleep he or she may have difficulty paying attention or completing a task properly and may become easily aggravated. Environmental noise is unwanted sound in one’s community except the noise that  originates in the workplace  (Goines & Hagler, 2007).  Environmental noise  is  a form of air pollution  and  is a  treat  to  a person’s  health and well-being.  Environmental noise has become more of a severe problem  because of population growth, urbanization, and  other mobile sources of noise (Goines & Hagler, 2007). This noise interferes with one’s ability to pay attention, communicate, and recreation time. The human body is equipped to react  to noise with a fight or flight response,  which can cause  nervous, hormonal, and vascular changes  (Goines & Hagler, 2007). Environmental noise can impair one’s ability to enjoy their territory, privacy, and personal space, and can lead to antisocial behavior.  Strategies to Reduce Noise in the Workplace or Living Environment  Unfortunately, there is no way to eliminate  noise in the workplace or in  one’s  living environment,  but a person can reduce the amount the noise, which is causing the problem. The first step to reducing noise pollution is to control the environment the best one can, which will limit the amount of noise that enters one’s personal space. A person can apply weather stripping to the windows or install double-paned windows to reduce noise. An employee can talk to his or her employer about techniques to reduce office noise such as installing a door so that the unwanted noise can be blocked. A person can try adding white noise, which can reduce environmental noise. An example of white noise would be playing a CD of nature sounds or other favorite types of music. This will allow a person to concentrate and will help reduce stress. Noise pollution causes stress therefore one should use stress relieving techniques such as breathing exercises, mediation, or yoga to remain focused on the task at hand. Other stress relieving techniques are exercise,  emotion-focused, and problem-focused coping.  Exercise  is  the best way for a person to cope with the stress in his or her life because it makes a person feel better mentally and can boost one's energy levels. Other coping strategies are  emotion-focused and problem-focused coping. Emotion-focused coping  deals with the emotional reactions to stress  and problem-focused coping  is reducing  the  demands  of the  stressful situation or increase the resources for meeting the demands of the situation (Straub, 2007). Conclusion Population density and noise can have many effects on individuals. The more crowded one’s environment becomes, more environmental noise is produced. Population density and noise can cause a person to become stressed, which can lead to other health issues. To escape from the crowded and noisy environment one may retreat to his or her territory where he or she has privacy and personal space. A person identifies themselves with their territory and any threat to that territory feels like a threat to themselves (Territoriality, 2004). A person feels connected to his or her territory and sees it as a means to satisfying his or her needs within society. Nature is another way a person can escape from environmental noise and population density. The nature environment allows one to feel a sense of connection with his or her environment. Other ways of reducing noise in one’s environment is to control the environment the best one can, which will limit the amount of noise that enters one’s personal space. Although, one cannot control how crowded or how noisy their environment becomes, he or she has options to escape from these environmental stressors or to at least reduce the environmental noise so that he or she can concentrate on the task at hand. References Clayton, S. & Myers, G. (2009). Conservation Psychology: Understanding and promoting human care for nature. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley-Blackwell. Davis, J. (2008). Psychological Benefits of Nature Experiences. Retrieved July 9, 2012, from http://www.johnvdavis.com/ep/benefits.htm Goines, L., & Hagler, L. (2007). Noise Pollution: A Modem Plague. Southern Medical Journal, 100( 3), 287-294, 8p. Noise: effects on health. (2007). In Cambridge Handbook of Psychology, Health and Medicine. Retrieved from http://www.credoreference.com.ezproxy.apollolibrary.com/entry/cupphm/noise_effects_o n_heal Personal Space. (2004). In Encyclopedia of Applied Psychology. Retrieved from http://www.credoreference.com.ezproxy.apollolibrary.com/entry/estappliedpsyc/personal _space Privacy. (2004). In Encyclopedia of Applied Psychology. Retrieved from http://www.credoreference.com.ezproxy.apollolibrary.com/entry/estappliedpsyc/privacy Straub, R.O. (2007). Health Psychology (2nd Ed.) New York, NY: Worth Publishers. Territoriality. (2004). In Encyclopedia of Applied Psychology. Retrieved from http://www.credoreference.com.ezproxy.apollolibrary.com/entry/estappliedpsyc/terr itorialit 1 THE EFFECTS OF  POPULATION DENSITY AND NOISE  2 THE  EFFECTS OF POPULATION DENSITY AND NOISE  3 THE  EFFECTS  OF  POPULATION DENSITY AND NOISE  4  THE EFFECTS OF POPULATION DENSITY AND NOISE  5  THE EFFECTS OF POPULATION DENSITY AND NOISE  6  THE EFFECTS OF POPULATION DENSITY AND NOISE  7 THE EFFECTS OF POPULATION DENSITY AND NOISE 8

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