Saturday, June 10

Do you feel more tired and find it difficult to sleep? It’s spring’s fault

With the newly launched spring the longer days and slightly warmer temperatures arrive, everything flourishes and it seems that the perfect factors come together to make us feel more animated and wanting to do things.

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However, for many people the arrival of the new season means just the opposite: tiredness, apathy or problems sleeping. This situation, which encompasses very diverse symptoms, is what is known as spring astheniawhich usually appears every year around these dates.

Although it is not considered a disease nor does it enter the World Health Organization (WHO) Catalog of International Classification of Diseases, it is defined as a temporary and subjective feeling of tirednessboth physical and mental, which does not have a specific organic cause and which, luckily, is fleeting and temporary.

Why spring asthenia appears

According to Spanish Society of General and Family Physicians (SEMG)spring brings together factors such as the change in time, the increase in temperature, changes in atmospheric pressure and humidity or allergy to pollen, which force the body to have to adapt to this new schedule and the increase in daylight hours.

The advance, the last weekend of March, of one hour in the clocks alters our circadian rhythms, which are responsible for generating changes in the production of endorphins, serotonin, melatonin and other substances in the nervous system. When the body is capable of self-regulating, fatigue disappears over the days.

Spring asthenia, therefore, is still the adaptation process that the body has to do to the new changes, not only in hours and light, but also in temperature and the environment.

Of day because they occur imbalances in hormonal cycles directed by the hypothalamus, a gland in the brain that is responsible for regulating body temperature, thirst, hunger, sleep and wakefulness, among other functions. During these first weeks of adaptation, the neurotransmitters that control all this can be altered.

Therefore, when there is no organic disease that explains this feeling of tiredness or previous illnesses that can be aggravated, spring asthenia is no longer important from a medical point of view, except if it takes longer than 15-20 days.

What are the symptoms of spring asthenia

Adapting to the spring season and the environmental changes that come with it can cause symptoms such as:

  • Fatigue and tiredness.
  • Daytime sleepiness and sleep disturbances, especially difficulty falling asleep.
  • Trouble concentrating.
  • Lack of appetite.
  • Anxiety and irritability.
  • Lack of motivation.
  • Decreased sexual desire.
  • Headache.

In some cases, in addition to these symptoms, generalized itching, cold sores, hair loss and brittle nails may also appear. These signs are usually related to the decrease in endorphins and melatonin levels, the hormone that regulates the sleep-wake cycle.

Some people are more affected than others, such as those who suffer from stress or allergy sufferers, as well as the elderly and young children, who are more affected by environmental changes.

How to better cope with these spring days

Although spring asthenia is difficult to prevent and there is no medical treatment to combat it, especially since we do not know when the symptoms will begin, it is possible to mitigate these signs and cope with this state by adopting a series of Healthy habits as:

  • Follow an order in the wake-sleep schedules: go to bed and get up at the same time every day and avoid using technological devices before going to sleep.
  • Take care of food: This should provide us with enough energy, prioritizing foods such as nuts or bananas and rich in fiber. Fruits and vegetables will help us replenish the mineral salts that the body loses more during the days when temperatures rise. These foods can be combined with rice, pasta, legumes and potatoes or with meat, fish and egg dishes. We will leave refined fats and sugars in the closet because they provide poor quality energy.
  • A good hydration: Consuming a sufficient amount of water a day favors kidney and intestinal function. The water can be replaced or completed with infusions, juices and broths.
  • Perform moderate exercise: half to one hour of daily exercise, preferably three to six hours before going to bed, otherwise the body may become active and therefore have difficulty sleeping. Walking, swimming, dancing or cycling are recommended activities, although in the event that fatigue is pronounced, activities that do not require much effort, such as yoga, can be carried out.
  • Avoid consumption of exciting substances: It is important to avoid stimulating substances such as coffee or alcohol. The first is a diuretic, which means that it causes water to leave the body, dehydrating it and making it even more tired.

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