On hot and humid days, the skin may become sticky and overheat, making the air heavier and making breathing difficult. But what about the humidity that can make the outdoors feel very stuffy?
The answer is that high humidity can make you feel hotter than on a dry day. This is because, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), humidity (the amount of water vapor (moisture) in the air) can make it difficult to get rid of excess body temperature through sweat. National Meteorological Service..
Normally, when sweat adheres to the surface of the skin, the heat from the body evaporates the sweat into the air, thereby cooling our body. skin.. However, the surrounding air already has a high water content and cannot absorb any more, so high humidity makes it difficult for sweat to evaporate. And the less water evaporates from the skin, the more unpleasant it feels warm.
Warm air can hold more water than cold air, so high temperatures increase the ability of humidity to interfere with thermoregulation.by NOAA National Environmental Information CenterA temperature rise of 1 degree Fahrenheit (0.55 degrees Celsius) corresponds to a 4% increase in water vapor in the atmosphere.This explains why humidity feels more unpleasant summer than winter, Even if the humidity level is the same.
Not only is the hot and humid air clogged and sticky on the skin, but it is also troublesome to breathe. However, according to the Washington Post, its “weight” is not due to its high water vapor content. Capital Weather Gang..Water vapor molecules that replace part of the dry air nitrogen And oxygen is actually Less Higher density means that moist air is actually lighter than dry air. However, water vapor emits a small amount of these gases, resulting in less emissions. oxygen Inhale in the humid air. In addition, our bodies are already strained by overheating, so it feels like we just need more work than usual to breathe.
Humidity thresholds are not set for general comfort levels to begin to decline, but NOAAs typically have a relative humidity (RH) level of 50% or higher and a dew point (a more direct measure of humidity). Consider. 65F or above (18 C) Unpleasantly high.
Fortunately, our bodies can adapt to heat and humidity to some extent, but they are probably not fast enough, for example, if you are on a week off in the tropics. “It takes an average of 9 to 14 days to fully adapt, depending on your physical condition. [level]”Body size and previous adaptation,” Larry Kenny, a professor of physiology and kinematics at Penn State University, told Live Science by email.
One of the first stages of heat adaptation is vasodilation. This allows more blood to flow near the surface of the skin, and excess heat is easily released to the air outside the body.On the other hand, these dilated blood vessels are converted to lower Heart rate According to Kenny, it provides more water for sweating. By the 3rd to the 5th, he added, sweating began to increase. However, this adaptation is only temporary. Just as skipping a month in the gym can lead to loss of strength and strength, non-exercise can reduce heat adaptation.
Regarding the question that the combination of temperature and humidity is beyond human tolerance, Kenny told Live Science that this question is driving his current research. The average level of temperature and humidity is Climate change, The answer may appear before saying “it’s humidity, not heat”.
Originally published in Live Science.
Why is the humidity so unpleasant?
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