The Daily Parker

Politics, Weather, Photography, and the Dog

Heat addles your brain

First, let me just say how lovely it was to wake up to this today, especially as we're mere minutes from the earliest solstice since the Washington administration:

My windows are open, and I no longer hate the world. Which, it turns out, is a perfectly normal response to high heat:

It turns out even young, healthy college students are affected by high temperatures. During the hottest days, the students in the un-air-conditioned dorms, where nighttime temperatures averaged [27°C], performed significantly worse on the tests they took every morning than the students with A.C., whose rooms stayed a pleasant [21°C].

R. Jisung Park, an environmental and labor economist at the University of Pennsylvania, looked at high school standardized test scores and found that they fell 0.2 percent for every degree above 72 Fahrenheit. That might not sound like a lot, but it can add up for students taking an exam in an un-air-conditioned room during a [32°C] heat wave.

Researchers don’t know why heat affects our cognition and emotions, but there are a couple of theories.

One is that the brain’s resources are being diverted to keep you cool, leaving less energy for everything else. “If you’re allocating all of the blood and all the glucose to parts of your brain that are focused on thermoregulation, it seems like it’s very plausible that you just wouldn’t have enough left for some of these kind of higher cognitive functions,” Dr. [Kimberly Meidenbauer, an assistant professor of psychology at Washington State University,] said.

Yesterday it was still above 31°C when I took Cassie for her last walk. Air conditioning plus a shower helped immensely.

Comments (2) -

  • Yak

    6/22/2024 3:11:42 AM +00:00 |

    You can have your 80C temperature back anytime you like, pal. We're sick of it in NY. My car melted yesterday.

  • The Daily Parker

    6/22/2024 12:54:41 PM +00:00 |

    Pix or it didn't happen!

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