How about some travel therapy to improve your mental health?

Going on vacation can be a form of therapy for people with fragile mental health.

This concept of “travel therapy” is supported by recent Australian research that draws parallels between travel experiences and some of the therapies recommended for people with mental disorders such as dementia.

What if tourism had real benefits for our mental health?

Indeed, the concept of travel therapy is gaining more and more ground among health specialists.

A study by researchers from Australia’s Edith Cowan University (ECU), conducted in collaboration with tourism and health experts, explains that while holidays are a time of leisure and relaxation, they can also have a therapeutic aspect.

“Medical experts may recommend dementia treatments such as music therapy, exercise, cognitive stimulation, reminiscence therapy, sensory stimulation, and adaptations to a patient’s mealtimes and environment” , says lead researcher Dr. Wen Jun in a statement.

“These are all equally often found on vacation.”

Going on vacation means changing surroundings and living new experiences.

This leads to cognitive and sensory stimulation.

In addition, holidaymakers spend more time outdoors, which allows them to boost their vitamin D and serotonin levels, whether they are visiting a cold or hot country.

On vacation, we are generally more physically active, usually walking more than usual, for example.

Additionally, meals are more likely to be shared experiences, involving socializing with other people, which “has been shown to positively influence the eating behavior of patients with dementia,” says Dr. Wen.

All of these experiences combine to represent a “holistic tourism experience”.

After two years marked by the Covid-19 pandemic, “this is the right time to identify the place of tourism in public health – and not just for healthy tourists, but vulnerable groups”, concludes the specialist. – AFP Relax News