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How does the weather affect us?

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Quick Answer

Weather can prevent people from spending time outdoors, cause physical damage to people and environments and change a person's mood and mental health, according to The Huffington Post. Seasonal changes can cause crime and suicide rates to rise and fall.

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As of 2014, research suggests that living in an area prone to extreme weather conditions, such as tornadoes or hurricanes, increases a person's risk of mental and physical health issues, as reported by The Weather Channel. Global warming may also increase the risk of anxiety, depression, substance abuse and suicide. Extreme weather also makes people more empathetic, as communities experience the same conditions together.

When a person is already in a negative mood, the temperature, sunlight, wind and precipitation conditions can make it worse. Studies have shown that violent crimes tend to increase during hot weather and decrease during the winter. Research suggests that death rates become lower in warm weather, in spite of increased crime rates.

Although winter is commonly associated with loneliness and gloom, studies suggest that suicide rates increase during warmer months. However, research also suggests that people who live in areas with mild summers and warm winters tend to be happier overall. This may be because spending time outdoors increases positive feelings.

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