Tuesday 23 September, 2014

Why we get cranky during summer heat

Published On: Sun, Jul 8th, 2012 | Mental Health | By BioNews

Hot weather isn’t just uncomfortable, it certainly takes a toll on our bodies by making us cranky and can also test our tempers, experts have revealed.

Nancy Molitor, an assistant professor of clinical psychiatry and behavioural science at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine said that many people feel a little hotheaded when the mercury rises.

In fact, hot and especially humid weather is known to be associated with increase in aggression and violence, as well as a lower general mood, Molitor said.

This is because trouble sleeping, dehydration and restrictions on our daily actives like being cooped up inside all day to avoid the sweltering heat may all contribute to a worsening mood in warm weather, Molitor said.

Additionally, a lack of control over the situation may further irritate some people, she said.

While it’s common to feel a little depressed or grouchy in the summer heat, a small percentage of people experience a summer version of seasonal affect disorder (SAD).

On top of feeling uncomfortable and depressed, people with this condition feel enormously anxious in the summertime, and can even become suicidal, Molitor said.

According to her, for them the heat and sunshine are “almost impossible to endure”.

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