Can this largest solar storm since 2005 make people more emotional?

By | January 25, 2012

We’ve been getting hit by the sun according to the Tuesday, January 24, 2012 Washington Post:

The largest solar storm since 2005, which hit Earth over the weekend and caused northern lights called auroras, peaked Tuesday after the Sun released a solar flare of radiation and plasma. As Brian Vastag reported: Fast on the heels of a solar storm that delivered a glancing blow over the weekend — triggering bright auroras in Canada and Scandinavia — the sun released an even more energetic blast of radiation and charged plasma overnight that could disrupt GPS signals and the electrical grid Tuesday, especially at high latitudes, space weather experts warned Monday. Already, the storm could be affecting satellite communications as streams of radiation from the sun bounce across the Earth’s magnetic field, which extends above the surface into space.

I found a number of claims about solar storms changing people’s moods:

“Recently we are experiencing an intensive amount of solar activity on the Sun which is affecting both the Earth and Humans.” –

“Solar flares affect, the Central Nervous System(stomach lining), all brain activity (including equilibrium), along with human behavior and all psycho-physiological (mental-emotional-physical) response. Solar flares can cause us to be, nervous, anxiousness, worrisome, jittery, dizzy, shaky, irritable, lethargic, exhausted, have short term memory problems and heart palpitations, feel nauseous, queasy, have prolonged head pressure and headaches” –

Most importantly, the solar flares affect the emotions. With these surges of energy and information coming from the sun, it is increasingly difficult for people to control the emotions by ‘talking ourselves down’. Managing the emotions is now something we must be aware of every day – especially anger. Our old tricks to avoid or suppress our anger will no longer work. Now, anger must become fuel for transformation. –

In searching for goodevidence, I found the following: More suicides and hospital deaths correlated with space proton flux, cosmic rays connected with traffic accidents, and less melatonin during solar flux that significantly changes geomagnetic activity… but melatonin doesn’t seem to change people’s moods much .

  1. (1) Monthly suicide rate was correlated with space proton flux (r=0.42,P=0.0001) and with geomagnetic activity (r=–0.22,P=0.03). (2) Total hospital and MI-related deaths were correlated with solar activity parameters (r=0.35,P<0.001) – springerlink
  2. Environmental physical activity (EPA) is considered as one of main regulators of human homeostasis. Evidence is growing that components of this activity through the “human factor” (i.e., changing human physiological and psychological status) can affect the dynamics of traffic accidents (TA)—the modern life epidemic. This paper presents results of studies conducted in order to reveal the potential influence of EPA [solar (SA), geomagnetic (GMA) and cosmic ray (CRA) activities] on the number of TA and related casualties in the years of the maximum and declining phase of SA cycle 23 (2000–2005). We selected the 7,160 most severe TA and their related 7,558 deaths and 1,647 severe injuries, registered in the Grand Baku Area (Azerbaijan, middle latitudes), for analysis. A significant increase of TA and victims was observed during the whole year and also during the last months of the year. The monthly numbers of TA and victims were inversely related to SA (probability p = 0.0002), and non-significantly to background GMA, but were significantly affected by major geomagnetic disturbances and storms. A strong correlation between CRA variations (cosmic ray intensity measured by ground-based neutron monitors on the Earth’s surface) and the number of TA (p = 0.001) has been observed. It was found that the number of TA which occur within a month depends significantly on the particular month of the year, the CRA, and the SA levels (inverse correlation). The increase of the number of TA is also significantly linked to geomagnetic storms, but not to steady GMA. These effects can be related to changes in human functional and behavioral markers provoked by EPA influences. – link
  3. Factors other than light may affect variations in melatonin, including disturbances in the geomagnetic field. Such a possibility was tested in Alta, Norway, located at latitude 70° N, where the aurora borealis is a result of large changes in the horizontal component (H) of the geomagnetic field. … A 3-hour mean value for the local geomagnetic activity index, K, was used for approximately the same 24-hour span. A circadian rhythm was found to characterize both melatonin and K, the peak in K (23:24) preceding that of melatonin (06:08). During the span of investigation, a circannual variation also characterized both variables. Correlation analyses suggest that changes in geomagnetic activity had to be of a certain magnitude to affect the circadian amplitude of melatonin. If large enough (> 80 nT/3 h), changes in geomagnetic activity also significantly decreased salivary melatonin concentration. – link.

  4. The function of melatonin, a hormone secreted by the pineal gland primarily at night, has not been definitively established in humans. To determine if pharmacologic doses of melatonin had any behavioral effects it was administered acutely to 14 healthy men. Their mood, performance, memory and visual sensitivity were assessed. Plasma melatonin concentration was assayed as well. Melatonin significantly decreased self-reported alertness and increased sleepiness as measured by the Profile of Mood States and the Stanford Sleepiness Scale self-report mood questionnaires. The effects were brief. Melatonin also affected performance, slowing choice-reaction time but concurrently decreasing errors of commission. Sustained fine motor performance was not impaired after melatonin administration nor were the tests of memory and visual sensitivity that were administered. It is concluded that melatonin, administered orally in pharmacological quantities, has significant but short acting sedative-like properties. – link


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