Weather sensitivity – when the weather makes you sick

Capricious April is characterized by abrupt weather changes,strong temperature fluctuations, but also humid weather or hair dryer. More than every third German is more or less sensitive to the weather. Women in particular feel the influence of the weather – especially in terms of general well-being and mood, but also in terms of performance and body functions such as circulation and breathing. Those affected react to changes in the weather with head pressure up to migraine attacks, exhaustion and fatigue, insomnia and poor concentration , inner restlessness, irritability, dizziness and other circulatory disorders or general malaise, but also with joint, muscle or scar pain. And: In extreme weather conditions, disease attacks and deaths increase.


Causes of sensitivity to weather

Sensitivity to weather is not a disease, but it indicates an imbalance in the autonomic nervous system. This forms something like an “inner world system” of the body and serves to maintain inner balance. If it is disturbed by stress, a hectic lifestyle, increasing environmental pollution (smog, ozone , UV light, etc.), it can get out of balance. Some people then react more intensely to external influences of the weather.
This could also explain why city dwellers are far more affected by sensitivity to the weather than the rural population: a fast pace of life as well as more environmental and stress loads make their vegetative nervous system vulnerable.


The influence of the weather on our nervous system


Sensitivity to weather is not a fantasy product – the experts agree on that. How exactly weather sensitivity is created is still unclear. Prof. Dieter Vaitl from the Institute for Clinical and Physiological Psychology at the University of Giessen showed that people who are sensitive to the weather are particularly sensitive to invisible electrical discharges such as those that occur when the weather changes. These discharges (so-called sferics) build up an electromagnetic field, comparable to weak, invisible lightning bolts, which burden the autonomic nervous system in its control function.


The Munich bio-meterologist Prof. Peter Höppe was able to prove that the predictions “weather sensitive” coincided with those of the German Weather Service in two thirds of the cases. He suspects that slight fluctuations in air pressure when the weather changes affect our so-called baroreceptors, sensory cells located at the bifurcation of the carotid arteries, which react to pressure and control blood pressure and pulse.

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