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Heat the Psyche is more than darkness

If the days before Christmas are getting shorter and darker, tend to be allegedly many of us to dark thoughts. Especially for people with depression, the light arms of November and December are considered to be difficult months. In the mental hospitals of the beds have to be in this weeks so. However, they are not. The rush in the hospitals rather then greatest if it is in the warm Season extreme weather changes. So how in the hot summers of 2003, or 2015.

To this startling finding, the psychiatrist Thomas Müller (51), with its extraordinary Bernese study. In cooperation with meteorologists, he has reconciled in the period from 1973 to 2017, over 80'000 patient admissions in the University Psychiatric services (UPD) in Bern Waldau with the weather situation at the respective date of admission. Müller was, until 2016, a Deputy Director of the UPD Waldau, since 2017, he acts as medical Director of the private clinic Meiringen, at the University of Bern, he has held an adjunct professorship of psychiatry.

Swiss pioneer study

A similar and such a long-term study on the Interaction of climate and Psyche in Switzerland, in Europe, it's never. In the spring, the results will be published in a scientific journal, Müller has reaffirmed to this newspaper. Working title: "When the Weather Drives Mad" – when the weather is crazy.

so the winter Blues just a legend? "No," reflected Thomas Müller, "a lot of people react to the dark time of the year, the seasonal autumn and winter depression is recognized as a separate disease subtype. Even more than by the persistence of cloudy days, the Psyche will go but, apparently, extreme Weather and heat-stressed rashes."

"When I was young, I wanted to be a meteorologist, my parents found the but not such a great idea."Thomas Müller, psychiatrist

the study took place in the spring of the heat of the year 2003. At the time, sass Müller, at that time senior physician in the UPD Waldau, in the laboratory building of the clinic and realized, that not less than 30 of the approximately 220 beds unoccupied. "This can't be so many empty beds," he wondered. "I wrote it, the apparently reassuring effect of the stable, warm spring weather with temperatures over 20 degrees," recalls Müller.

spring heat-filled clinic

In April, but the record of the summer was heralded with a first early boost of Heat. "The clinic was suddenly jam-Packed," says Müller. And filled after each subsequent boost of Heat again. It was in that summer to a pattern of the onslaught. Schizophrenic, Depressive, old-age dementia – they all got on, apparently again and again to nearly 40 degrees higher temperatures are bad.

That from Miller's first observations in the heat of the summer of 2003, then a hypothesis about our sensitivity to weather, and finally, a pioneer study, which is on two beautiful coincidences. The first: a psychiatrist Müller is a Meteorologiefan. "My grandfather was an observer, a monastic weather. When I was young, I wanted to be a meteorologist, my parents found but not such a great idea," he says with a Smile.

"Yes, do not throw away!"

The second coincidence: in 2006, it received Müller a call to the UPD Executive assistant. There is the old patient admission records back to the year 1973, informed you and asked if he could use it or whether or not she should destroy it. "Destroy!", Müller answered, clairvoyant. He inherited a collection of papers, which led him back in the early days of the computer age. "The oldest data were on a 20-Meter-long paper web, it's an old computer expression," says Müller.

long days of work he and a graduate student searched the 110'000 anonymized one-day admission tickets. You sorted duplications and ordered the entry of findings in the classification of mental diseases. The anonymised data from 1996 was able to ask him to the clinic and then available in electronic Form. After the cleanup, Müller had a blow over around 80'000 - and puncture-resistant data.

"It can be assumed that calm, not to cold and not to hot weather soothes the Psyche."Thomas Müller, psychiatrist

"Then took I up all my courage and called the geographical Institute of the University of Bern. I said, I have a somewhat unusual request for interdisciplinary research," recalls Müller. The geographers found the request not at all unusual, and referred Müller to the meteorologists, Jürg Luterbacher. The had also brought the thickness of the annual rings in the trees with the climate. Today, Luterbacher, Professor of meteorology at the University of Giessen in Germany, and müller's most important co-author in the study of the maddening weather.

The team of researchers from the Waldau and the geographical Institute confirmed that the assignment of the clinic, especially after heavy Weather in the warm Season, high-soared. From the data material was however not to deduce what mental illness types of in which mass react to the weather. Müller can also say explicitly what the weather will do to our soul is particularly good. "But you can assume that a quiet, not too cold and not too hot weather soothes the Psyche," he says. And adds, that in psychiatry, the ends of schizophrenia and age of dementia as being particularly vulnerable apply.

That psychiatric hospitals need to align their capacities to climate change, is still misunderstood.

by the Way, have catered to the to the end of the year in his Team for a small Irritation that admits Müller. Although it was one of the warmest since the start of the measurements, found the clinics to the same crowd as in previous heat periods. Müller believed that this is due to two reasons: The summer of 2018 was consistently warm, but without sharp peaks, so that could get used to the Psyche better to the heat. And 2018, which is new for psychiatry collective agreement has resulted in all Swiss hospitals to reduce waiting duration. "The year of 2018 is perhaps the exception that proves the discovered rule," says Müller.

Suffer in extreme regions

The psychiatrist rare studies from abroad was also of the few, which will explore the mental health consequences of climate change. Thus, it was investigated how the melting of the polar region are added to the Inuit, or the heat in the drought-stricken regions of Africa, Asia and Australia, the indigenous farmers. The polar peoples react with trauma and alcohol addiction on the Disappearance of their livelihoods and hunting grounds. In the case of the farmers in drought-stricken regions, an Increase in the suicide rate.

"The psychological vulnerability in the thinking about climate change a lot", says Thomas Müller. As a result of climate warming, you discuss the spread of Malaria or tick-borne borreliosis. The Psyche will but observe, as is so often until the very last.

"In the spring of depression, ill have a back swing feel but still negative winter feelings."Thomas Müller, psychiatrist

Inspired by his study, Müller gave a talk recently at the Federal office for health (BAG) on the connection between climate and the Psyche. "I'm not pushed on a lot of hearing," he says. Although there is BAG-forecasts how the pharmacy and doctor visits as a result of the climate might be piling warming up to the year 2050. But also that psychiatric hospitals need to align their capacities to climate change, would still be ignored.

High suicide rates in the spring

the Federal office of public health, Müller was at least in contact with the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute in Basel in contact. The former tropical Institute has carried out a study on the Interaction of the climate with the rate of suicide in Switzerland. The Basel findings are consistent with Miller's Bernese knowledge: Violent climatic changes of the Psyche. Because of the Google queries, search for suicide methods detected the Basler that the suicides pile up less in the dark winter months, but in the spring. "In the spring of depression, ill have a back swing feel but still negative winter feelings", explains Müller of the time-delayed Interaction.

He now wants to perform with the Basel Institute of tropical a Switzerland-wide study of the climate and the Psyche. But there is still a Problem: The Federal statistical office has the anonymised data of all psychiatric hospitals in the country. However, it is laid down by law, that the data are only monthly, not daily. What weather abrupt to trigger the exchange, could not have been understood.

A small project is likely to be more feasible. Thomas Müller wants to ask in his new home, the private clinic Meiringen, at the entry and exit interviews in the future, whether the infamous Haslitaler hair dryer gives the patient a headache and other complaints.

(Berner Zeitung)

Created: 26.12.2018, 19:24 PM

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