Rainy days affect people in multiple ways. Some get upset since they cannot move around freely as they usually would. Some would have to change their regular schedules due to the sleepiness that comes about when it rains.
During rainy days, there is high cloud cover, increasing the amount of darkness in the atmosphere. There is also high humidity and low oxygen levels in the air. The sound of rain also increases the urge to fall asleep.
Everything may slow down on rainy days at work, home, or on the road. You may notice that everybody wakes up a little later than usual when it rains. In addition, there is more traffic on the streets.
Do you ever wonder how all this connects with the rainy weather? Well, there may be a possibility of laziness to avoid being caught up in the 'bad' weather. However, there is much more to learn about the possible effects of rain on our bodies.
Why Does Rain Make You Feel Sleepy?
Believe it or not, there are scientific explanations as to why your rainy days are lazy and dull. High levels of cloud cover, humidity, darkness, and peace are some of the few things that come with rain. The sounds of rain are also the culprit in the feeling in the atmosphere on rainy days.
The simple platters that fill the air when it rains also affect your sleepiness on rainy days. Like the sound of waves crashing, leaves rustling, and heartbeat, rain is also a pink noise.
According to Iris Langman, pink noise has all the frequencies people can hear. It is similar to white noise in many ways, except pink noise emphasizes lower pitches.
Some people may find rain soothing as they even record the sound for better sleep later. A study in 2012 reveals that pink noise reduces brain waves hence its ability to facilitate sleep. In 2017, another study found that listening to small bursts of pink sound in a loop can improve sleep.
However, Dr. Nathaniel Watson from UW Medicine Sleep Center says that more studies need to be done. He adds that the initial studies on pink noise are imperfect due to the low number of participants. Also, the placebo effect showed the participants that they were listening to pink sounds.
Lack Of Sunlight
Rainy days have more cloud cover. Hence the atmosphere has a darkness due to the dark clouds. Our bodies respond to the low amount of light by relaxing since we naturally train ourselves to sleep in the dark.
In addition, the lack of sunlight in the atmosphere affects the hormonal balance in the body. The human body releases more serotonin and less melatonin when under the sun. More serotonin improves alertness and cheerfulness.
On days without sun, the body releases more melatonin instead. Melatonin hormone regulates the sleep cycle. It is guilty of the feeling of drowsiness which is standard on rainy days. The latter is that you experience laziness and sleepiness.
According to research from institutions like Sangmyung University, rain is a non-threatening sound to the brain. Dr. Peacock explains that the monotone rhythm of the rain does not trigger the brain's threat-active response system.
Since it is a non-threatening sound, the adrenaline hormones maintain a healthy level in the body. Adrenaline is a stress hormone; therefore, low secretion levels mean better rest and sleep.
Rainy days have high humidity in the air outside. Therefore, the body requires more energy to maintain its natural state of equilibrium. As a result, you may experience tiredness which may lead to sleep.
The Earthy Smell Of Rain
During the dry season, plants secrete oils to discontinue the development of seedlings with little resources to facilitate growth. The oils mix with a chemical by soil bacteria after rain to create a 'musky' smell.
A Mother's Womb Illusion
Some people describe the warmth and comfort of rainy days as the feeling of being in a mother's womb. Some people may want to fall asleep when it rains to experience such comfort.
Lower Oxygen Levels
The body requires a certain amount of oxygen to stay active and alert. On rainy days, low amounts of oxygen in the air cause drowsiness. The water vapor and air pressure increase when it rains, reducing oxygen levels in the air.
Increase In Negative Ions
Negative ions originate from natural places like sunlight, water, air, and the earth's radiation. According to research, negative ions regulate your sleep and guarantee a good night's sleep. In addition, negative ions are antidepressants, regulate breathing, and improve the immune system.
People usually avoid going outside when it rains. Many people get stuck in their houses during their free time to avoid catching a cold or flu. Since there is not much to do, many opt for a nap. It is this lazy feel or this state of wanting to rest that compels one to sleep.
Less Distracting Noises
People who live in busy urban areas have a lot of noise around them during regular days. However, raindrops falling against surfaces around you on rainy days mask all the usual noises. Some people may record the sound of rain to play to fall asleep.
Meditation is a common practice among many people to enhance relaxation. The sound of rain falling can provide the same meditative feeling as it triggers the alpha waves in the brain. As a result, the brain relaxes, making you fall asleep easily.
The calmness and soothing sounds puts one in a mood of meditation and reflection. Such makes it easy for one to fall asleep when it is raining.
What To Do To Avoid Sleeping When It Rains?
Rainy days may be challenging for people who have to work or study. Fighting the urge to sleep on such days may become quite impossible. However, you might want to avoid sitting down and involve yourself in active tasks to stay productive.
Keep The Lights On
The amount of natural light in your bedroom is lower when it rains. By turning on the lights, you want to avoid the production of melatonin which happens in the absence of sunlight. Studies indicate that bright light alerts people and keeps them awake.
Heavy rains may trap you inside in a quiet and boring atmosphere that may facilitate laziness and sleep. Doing a simple workout session will help stay awake. Twenty minutes of exercise is enough to keep your body active.
Engage With People
A simple five-minute conversation is enough to make you active. We recommend talking to a friend, family member, or colleague on the phone or in person. Engaging with other people and animals will distract you from your sleepiness.
Take A Nap
A quick nap is a remedy to drowsiness. Taking a ten-minute break to shut your eyes will make a difference for those who cannot nap at work—taking a considerable amount of caffeine before napping may increase alertness after waking up.
Does Everyone Experience Sleepiness During Rainy Days?
No, not everyone has the same feeling of relaxation and laziness during rainy days. Some people prefer 'normal' weather to fall asleep. Some hardly find rain sounds soothing or relaxing at all. In addition, thunder and lightning may accompany the rain, disrupting their sleep.
There has been a lot of research on the connection between rain and sleepiness. Some have proven that, indeed, rain causes drowsiness. However, some people may enjoy relaxing and sleeping on rainy days due to the quiet and peaceful environment.
Feruza is a mom and a blogger. She had a neck pain for 15 years, which made her interested in everything about pillows.
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