How does the weather affect our moods?

Posted at 7:01 PM, Jul 07, 2017
and last updated 2017-07-07 22:01:18-04

Can a shift in the season cause a shift in your mood? Maybe you have noticed a bit more irritation in your voice since the summer temperatures have really ramped up.

"We don't deal with the heat," Merle Handleman said. "We go from the air conditioned house to the air conditioned car, to the air conditioned store, back to the air conditioned car and the air conditioned house."

Handleman has her way of coping with the temperatures. But, others do not always have that choice; their lives are outdoors. And John Higgins admitted, he can feel the temperatures from the outside make their way into his mindset.

"When the heat starts coming...I can definitely kind of see myself becoming a little bit more irritable," Higgins said.

It seems the sun is making our blood boil in anger, maybe more literally than we ever thought before.

It turns out, that feeling is a real thing and there is science to back it up!

"When you have rapid changes in temperature, it's very hard to adjust," explained Ole Thienhaus, MD. "And for some people, it's harder than others."

Thienhaus is the head of the Department of Psychiatry and professor at the University of Arizona.

He explained that the main function of the brain is to help us adjust to our environment.

But for this season especially, Thienhaus said the change happened so fast.

He compares the feeling to a fever.

"First, you feel just lousy," Thienhaus explained. "You're irritable and you're down."

Thienhaus said common sense is the cure.

He suggests hydrating and listening to your body to find times to cool down a way to keep your mood up!