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Physical Environment

Humans live in a world dense with objects (both natural and made by humans). It is a world that can present a cacophony of sensations: various forms of light, sound, aromas, and textures. Individuals actively engage their surroundings toward various ends. Sometimes the affordances of those settings fit the individual’s needs. If so, those surroundings help promote good health and optimal development. However, sometimes those surroundings present challenges that can be disruptive—even deadly. The engagement of individuals with the physical environment penetrates to every level of psychobiological functioning. The dynamism and complexity of human engagement with various settings in and through time make it difficult to unravel just how particular aspects of the physical environment matter; they present challenges to those interested in documenting ...

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