What is spring fever

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What is spring fever? It's the irresistible itch to get outdoors

Spring fever prompts kids (and adults) to skip school (or work) because they are compelled by the sudden arrival of sunny, warmish weather that is beckoning them to go outdoors. Spring fever is the overwhelming “itch” to go outside and stay there. People may get the itch to do other things as well.

Everyone who lives in the northern hemisphere is subject to spring fever, particularly after a long, hard, dark, frigid, isolating winter.

When the first crocus blooms and trees start to bud there is the realization that, yes, once again, you have endured and survived another winter, during which your furnace stopped working on the coldest day of the year, your pipes burst and froze, your heating bills nearly led to bankruptcy, you crashed your new car because of icy road conditions and, to add insult to injury, gained 10 pounds on top of all of that other misery.

Spring fever means that you yearn for the warm months to come and can't wait. When there is the slightest inkling –Ah, ha! Sunshine! No rain, no snow, no freezing temperature! – You seize the moment and want to get outside and breathe in some fresh air, feeling the warm sun on your pallid skin.

Every teacher will tell you that most students start slacking off toward the end of the school year because they have spring fever which rampantly morphs into summer fever. The students want to be outside (as do the teachers.)

Hormonal Basis? Probably

Spring fever probably has a hormonal basis. During the winter, serotonin or the “happiness hormone” becomes depleted because of the lack of sunshine. That’s why people tend to sleep more in the winter. The “sleep hormone” melatonin is stronger during the winter because serotonin becomes exhausted.

As the days begin to get longer in the spring, the body readjusts itself and releases more estrogen, testosterone and endorphin. When serotonin starts to rise in the spring, humans can experience a burst of enthusiasm and energy as well as become actually giddy.

However, sometimes when a person undergoes this change, it makes him feel tired rather than energized.

Other interesting changes that occur in the spring include blood pressure dropping as a result of the blood vessels expanding. During the transition period between winter and spring the human body needs more proteins and vitamins.

Effects of Springtime

In the past, scurvy was rampant during the spring as was rubella and measles. Gout, which is inflammation of the joint and is a terribly painful condition, peaks in April. Additionally, there are more cases of rosacea and dermatitis in the spring.

Men have higher sperm counts in the spring months, resulting in an unusually high rate of unplanned pregnancies. There are more suicides in the spring and fewer people have sex for some reason, which means there are fewer sexually transmitted diseases in the spring months.

Those who have a whopping case of spring fever may find themselves restless and energetic. They may experience an increase in their sexual appetite and have more vitality.

American Colonists

Some historians think that the term “spring fever” was actually minted by American colonists who probably were experiencing scurvy after being deprived of fresh fruits and vegetables during the winters months. Spring fever actually meant a temperature and not feeling well.

Gearing Up For Spring

Receiving gardening catalogs in the mail is one of the first signs that Easter is on its way and shortly after that it is time to plant. Other catalogs start featuring bathing suits and summer wear and patio furniture. Women begin planning their spring and summer weddings.

Spring is truly a time of renewal. The bleak landscape of winter transitions into greenery and sunshine. Birds start tweeting, meaning it’s time for them to mate.

In the spring, animals have their babies. Animals need to give birth in the spring, rather than winter, because this is the time of year when the days are longer, which means they have more time to seek out food for their babies, and more food is available in the spring. Seeing newborn animals is a sign that spring is here.

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