Temperatures are expected to hit as high 24 degrees today and so I’m heading off to Brighton!
Once again, we are in the throes of summer, warm weather, sunshine and holidays. Somehow, life seems to be just a little bit better for most of us. But what does that mean about our mental health?
Earlier this year, I wrote an article on Welldoing about the mental health benefits of spring. This time, I like to focus on what we can draw from summer.
- We have more time to exercise. As the sunlight beckons, we have more reasons to run, take a walk, swim… the list goes on. There are numerous ways to get more active on a daily basis in the summer months, so pick your favourite activities and go outdoors.
- A surge on vitamin D. This is because summer also means that it’s time to bare our near naked flesh to the world. Vitamin D intake is essential for the regulation of calcium and phosphorus absorption, maintenance of healthy bones and teeth, and can help to supply a protective effect against multiple diseases and conditions such as cancer, type 1 diabetes and multiple sclerosis.
- Summer improves our mood. More than just getting Vitamin D, sunny weather can have a positive impact on mental health and mood. By getting out, for at least 30 minutes, The positive impact of warm, sunny weather can have on mental health and mood is real, according to this research.
- Improved concentration. Richard Louv coined the term ‘nature-deficit disorder’ in his 2008 book Last Child in the Woods. It’s a play on attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Researchers have observed that children with ADHD seem to focus better after being outdoors. And of course, summer is the perfect time to be outdoors!
- We have more time to spend with family and friends. Summer gives us a good excuse to go on holidays with family and friends. Evidence shows that good relationships (with family, friends and our wider communities)are vital for our mental well-being.
So, let’s all hope that the warm weather lasts this time, but even if not, just enjoy it while we can!
Dennis Relojo is the Founder of Psychreg, and is the Editor-in-Chief of Psychreg Journal of Psychology. In addition to his duties with Psychreg, he also serves as editorial board member for a number of peer-reviewed journals. Dennis holds a master’s degree in Psychology from the University of Hertfordshire and his research interest lie in the broad area of applied psychology. You can connect with him through Twitter @DennisRelojo and his website.