Do Full Moons Make People Act Crazy?
Urban legends abound on the subject of things—and people— going haywire around the time of the full Moon. But is there any truth to it? Depends on who you ask.
“Must be a full Moon …” is a common utterance whenever things start to go a little haywire. The idea that a full Moon can drive people mad is an old one. Even the word “lunatic,” and its relatives “loon” and “loony,” derive from the Latin word “luna,” meaning “Moon.”
Urban legends abound on the subject of things going haywire around the time of the full Moon. According to contemporary lore, emergency rooms and veterinary offices are busier when the Moon is full; suicide, arson, and violent crime rates increase, patients in psychiatric hospitals act out more, and there are more traffic accidents.
Others even attribute medical occurrences, such as women going into labor, epileptic seizures, and sleepwalking to the full Moon. But is it true?
Do Full Moons Really Affect Our Behavior?
People who believe that Moon phases affect human behavior point out that the human body is about 60% water. If the phase of the Moon can affect ocean tides, and even cause a bulge in the Earth’s crust, surely it would exert an effect of human beings, they reason.
And, of course, one of the most popular features in the Farmers’ Almanac is our Best Days calendar, which recommends specific days to do everything from plant root crops to cut hair for increased growth, based on the phases of the Moon and other factors. Readers swear that they see better results in their endeavors when they follow these recommendations.
What Does Science Say?
Science has taken the question of the full Moon’s effects seriously enough that there have been a number of studies examining the various claims. Nearly all of them have come up empty, though. All have either found no correlation between the Moon and human behavior or were later debunked by other studies that questioned their methods.
Scientists are also quick to point out that objects on Earth have more effect on one another than the Moon does. Astronomer George Abell famously noted that a mosquito sitting on your arm exerts more gravitational force on your body than the Moon does.
So why the persistent belief, purportedly even among emergency room personnel and police, in the power of the full Moon to bring on crazy behavior? One hypothesis, posed in a 1999 issue of the Journal of Affective Disorders, suggested that sleep deprivation, caused by the brightness of the full Moon, might have worsened existing mental disorders. Once electric lights were invented, the authors said, the effect was negated, which is why modern studies have found no correlation.
Others say the belief has remained strong due to “confirmation bias,” the idea that people favor information that supports their preconceived notions. In other words, if you expect people to act strangely during a full Moon, every strange behavior you encounter during a full Moon reinforces that belief.
Read 7 Ways The Moon May Affect Your Health
What do you think? Do you notice people acting differently around the time of the full Moon? Share your thoughts below!
Jaime McLeod is a longtime journalist who has written for a wide variety of newspapers, magazines, and websites, including MTV.com. She enjoys the outdoors, growing and eating organic food, and is interested in all aspects of natural wellness.
I am at work right now, sitting outside, taking a break. I am looking at the full moon. I work in a dementia facility and most of my residents have been going off the chain all day. Screaming, falling down, more aggressive behavior than usual. I came outside to take a breather from all the chaos and looked up and yes, it’s a full moon.
I was a CNA as well as an EMT for quite a few years. As a CNA it only took a couple of our alzheimer/dementia patients to start acting exceptionally off-kilter before one of my coworkers would get on their phones to find out if it was a full moon. We all knew that if either of the Emma’s started to act crazier than usual, it was a full moon. In the EMS world we would get hammered with a larger call volume as well as some bizarre calls. For me personally, I get exceptionally clumsy a day or so before the moon reaches the full moon phase. IT MAKES A HUGE DIFFERENCE! Ask anyone who has porphyria, the disease of the vampire, which is where the werewolf legend came from, and they will tell you, it makes a difference.
I have been a 911 dispatcher for 20 yrs. I can tell you we notice a difference in call volume and the call types where ppl are not acting normal. We have callers we consider “regulars “ that we know they will be calling more frequently during the full moon. We believe in the full moon theory.
My family were in the bar business for more than 5o years, and there were definitely strange people affected by the phases of the moon, and we’d always say there would be full members out on the full moon, but also when it was the new moon, there would be new members, Hah!
IT DOES affect people!
I notice it in my family, friends and strangers!
hyper!!! loud!! restless!!!
I was a florist for 25yrs. and we always sold more roses during a full moon.
Tell this to doctors and nurses in the ER! And police!
Everyone on here says the same thing, I worked blah blah, I know blah blah. I can tell you with out a doubt blah… Most can’t tell you definitively what they had for breakfast 2 days ago. Most mistake a waxing gibbous phase at 95% illumination as a full moon. Plenty of people in the criminal justice/medical/mental health field have substance abuse problems. Yet somehow all the people here can magically recall with perfect clarity days that happened years ago. Right, cause I guess every 911 dispatcher, cop, or nurse is an amateur astronomer, with perfect memory, that never took a drink lol. I’ll tell you what I have seen in spades in the criminal justice field and mental health feild (2 Fields I’ve worked in); confirmation bias and arrogance. People who don’t know the facts of a situation and jump to conclusions based on erroneous gut feelings.
I am an amatuer astronomer and I notice the moon cycles. I am a nurse. A lot of the time, when people say it must be a full moon…It is a NEW MOON. My humble opinion is people see a Full Moon and just assume. Although I do have trouble sleeping during the full moon….it is because it is sooo beautiful and I just LOVE to watch it. The new moon is one you cannot see.
I had a huge argument with my girlfriend last night and low and behold it’s a new moon today.
Almost every month the moon cycles effect her to the point that I keep track.
You mean they don’t recall if it was a full moon and they’re just saying that? There’s no relation to the moon and behavior?
Gee, you must be fun at parties!
Funny how so many people experience negative emotions during full moon. While I also see a huge change in myself, I get extr hyper, silly & excessively happy. But all in a extreme way
Every time there’s a full moon me and my boyfriend get into a bad fights fits yelling all day and we don’t do this knowingly of the full moon obviously, but I look outside and there’s always a full moon. We both have some mental disorders as well so.
I did a paper in 1990 and proved that the full moon has a higher affect on human behavior it has to do with the tuger pressure on the fontanel lobe of the brain causing people with emotional disorders to act out yes I proved using data from Dade county Florida and Cleveland Ohio that there is an increase in violent crimes murder suicide and rape . your data needs to be time of crime not effects 3 days later.when person dies or reports information.
If you say full moon doesn’t effect people’s, you don’t know what you’re doing, because some people’s really does really get mad especially the people’s who uses pills ?
People can say whatever they want. I’ve worked in jails, dispatched, Drs offices just to name a few things and whenever there’s full moon people do bizarre things! People who have had head injuries act out. I had three grandchildren born on super or blood moons. I am also aware of myself becoming easily agitated for no reason. Times I didn’t even know it was a full moon till I looked out. I’ve also talked to nurses, police and many other professions and they ALL back up the theory that people act strangely during a full moon. I don’t have the answers why and I don’t know anyone who does. Maybe darkness (satan) just doesn’t like any kind of light! But full moons absolutely do affect most people.
The moon is symbolic of the church Rev 12. Song of Solomon 6:10. As the church is coming into fullness for rapture there will be more sin (darkness) as we are witnessing today, because satan knows his time is short. The physical typing the spiritual. Jesus cometh soon
I like this but I don’t see anything like it In song of Solomon
Interesting thing the moon…
100% agree. i notice that during a full moon i pick fights with everyone i come into contact with, including loved ones. its always something they say which causes me to see red and want to end the relationship.
I had a serious argument with both my son and daughter a few days ago. Then i googled ‘full moon this month’ and sure enough…these fights were caused by myself during the full moon. And so it has been all my life. The world surely does not need people like myself, especially with all its current problems. Im sick of myself.
IM TORMENTED BY THE BEAUTIFUL MOON THAT LIGHTS UP MY NIGHT WITH THE EXCEPTION OF the fact that everything makes me angry and then i feel like maybe i shouldn’t have acted like a total b*t÷h but the full moon really puts me threw hell
Ive had people laugh me and tell me im crazy to think that. I said you can think what you want but the proof is out here and easily accessible
So i usually spend like 30-40 minutes explaing all that so i just tell em “google it ”
Can yall help me out on this one….Are any of you all affected by the full moon a few days before it arrives and usual just a few hours after its gone
How many can relate?
God created all things for His pleasure including u so don’t let anything created edge u out, have faith in God and rebuke that abnormal feeling in Jesus name because u are suppose to have dominion over all things created.
Like 10:19 “Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you.”
Jesus loves you and He cometh soon.
You are not alone!!
I have much difficulty just a few days b4 during and a few days after the. Full moon.
I’m 76 years old and I can remember being a teen and breaking up with my boyfriend once a month. I’d like to bet it was at the full m[n too Now I become restless and when that m[n is not so close I sleep like a baby Sure its Beautiful but it wreaks havoc on me and then I’m not at my est on those days!
You aren’t alone! We often hear stories about people that are affected by the moon like this. Thank you so much for sharing here with your community!
As a retired teacher of middle school students, I can say that ‘something’ stirs the spirit/behavior during a full moon.
Anyone who has ever worked in the school system will tell you that behavior definitely changes during a full moon.
it is a full moon today and im definitely feeling weird
I worked the front counter at Juvenile Hall and during full moons we ALWAYS had a lot more kids come in and more weird things being done – even the police admitted it.
I worked as a police dispatcher for almost 30 years, and we always had crazier than usual happenings during a full moon.
Definitely right but it is evil spirit causing it, and Jesus has come to save.
I’m done 10 years in the penitentiary and I’m telling you right now there is something very connected with full moons and crazy behavior!! I know on many occasions I said it must be a full moon and went and checked and it sure was because people where acting nuts!!!
This is gonna sound really odd to hear but…..maybe once or twice a month near a full moon, my sister just has laughing fits. She laughs at things that normally she doesn’t laugh at. She’s 15 and it’s only her that has laughing fits. You could say anything to her that she finds funny and she won’t stop laughing. I’m not sure if it’s the moon affecting her mood or if it’s just her hormones.
Absolutely the moon effects tides on earth. The human body is primarily made of water, why shouldnt we think the tides can effect us
I also worked for police and fire as a dispatcher and we definately got mor calls and crazy, weird calls
I would say that there’s some truth in human behavior vs a full moon, it doesn’t appear to effect everyone but there’s something there. A very close friend of mine is a police officer and he swears by this, noting an increase in crime and general ‘strange’ behavior during a full moon that other cops tend to take note of. Maybe the Scientist that found no supporting evidence need to go on a ‘ride along’ with their local police.
The full moon may very well affect my mood, but if so, that is a result of the stupid, crazy, ridiculous things that very much tend to happen around that time. Don’t even get me started on the technical glitches that occur – with computers, cars, appliances, etc. For me, always around the full moon. People die. Livestock dies. Accidents happen. Totally random, bizarre issues arise. The weather gets crazy. It has gotten to the point, this past year, that I absolutely DREAD full moons. And this month’s Wolf Moon did it again! Surely I am not the only one who notices this correlation?
Nevermind the second half of the article completely ruined my point.:(
Working behind the counter at auto pars shops & Convenience stores for over 40 years I can tell you act different during a full moon. Combative, grouchy complaining about everything. And I’ve had female customers become rather amorous then. And I’m not all that good looking.
Ha ha Carl, thanks for the smile!
That’s so funny!
I’ve worked in an Emergency Department for 30 years, & can only describe what I’ve observed. Complete chaos, and extremely bizarre behavior. Indeed this can happen on any given night, however a full moon would take it to a whole new level of crazy. I’m retired now and am off the front line . I now find a full Moon lifts my level of consciousness & brings me joy. I feel very connected to it.
I feel the full moon! Most of the time it’s fine. But lately it’s been strong! It’s going to be off the hook?!?! Be very swear of your surroundings more then you are us to!!! Have fun, be safe and Good luck!!❗❗❗
Hi Cara i feel the moon too. My whole life and sometimes its overwhelming and super strong like this month.
I would like to find out if my feelings are similar to other feelings. I feel also the new moon. Can anyone relate to this. Thank you
Well if the Moon is affecting you in anyway you should go to a site called “Budda house”. They have changed my life ever since to the point that I can’t wait for a full moon because it can charge me up until the next full Moon. Your understand what I mean when you go on the website. Have fun, stay safe, and enjoy every second of life that God has given you ?
I would love to check out this site, is it just BuddahHouse.com?
I also feel a connection to the Moon. And, my name is Cynthia – Goddess of the Moon! And, I’m a Cancer.
My husband gets more combative leading up to and during the full moon. He uses it as an excuse to pick fights, then ignore me. If I go into the room he is in, he screams that it’s too crowded, and stomps off. His counselor even went so far as to say that I should just put up with it, and not do anything to piss him off.
How old is he? Put up with, O -hell NO!! If he can act out like a fool and he is ok with you have bigger issues?? Bit put up with it. NO WAY!!
Jesi, that’s very unfortunate. Time to find a new counselor!
I have the same issue with my husband!!!! I always know when the full moon is coming. The smallest of things set him off.
For the last few years, I have kept a chart of the dates in my life that are really awfu for whatever reason, days when bad things happen and when I just feel abnormally hopeless, depressed and frazzled. I recently checked the dates of these difficult times against the state of the moon, and nearly ALL of them are in the few days leading up to a full moon or on the day of the full moon itself. I don’t care what anyone says – for ME, the full moon seems to add a lot of stressors to my life, both emotionally and concretely. It’s the truth.
IF YOU know that, make it work for you just figure it out. I beleave there is way. DON’T let it own you, own it!!Try it??
I’m 61 yrs.old, and YES, i do know for a fact the Moon , in my life and others around me , have seen and felt and experienced . Me it’s more body pain, i ALWAYS hurt worse. I did a study of my own. My sleep is more restless , my husband gets more cranky .Witnessed it , felt it , I believe it, and the Gravity pull, makes the sense.
Am i Senseless for saying this ?? I surely HOPE not. Because I wouldn’t say this , if not true and has happened way too many times , EACH MONTH .
But I do LOVE FULL MOONS THEY ARE SO ROMANTIC, to look at, cause I hurt too much to BE ROMANTIC…
I can feel when a full moon is coming i start to get a lot of anxiety and i feel very uneasy a few days before and during the full moon.
Hi Ava, it happens to a lot of people.
Happens to me as well
I find that when there is a half moon I CAN NOT SLEEP.When it’s a full moon me and my friends are always really awkward and can’t decide what to do normally it’s fine.
I have 3 children that where acting out this morning. One child has no window in her room. So, its not the bright moon disturbing her. but, the moon is full. Shes been fine for a few weeks since just after the last full moon, now shes bi polar again and again the moon is full.
Full moon actually affect me, but in a very different way. I feel an upsurge of energy. I become more loving towards my kids. They appear much more adorable.First I thought these are just mood swings that comes post delivery.But somehow I discovered there is a completely different aspect to this.
Now, my body tells me when is the full moon and when is new moon.My energy levels change accordingly.
Absolutely believe in it! Also that “confirmation bias” works both ways. 😉
Absolutely believe in it. Also believe that “confirmation bias” works both ways. 😉
I can literally feel my body change a couple days before the full moon, Being a cancer probly does not help. I don’t care what the scientists say I can feel it in my body and every time I look it’s almost a full moon Usually the day before the actual full moon.
hey tamara! i totally get hte part about being a cancer…im a cancer sun and pisces moon…. both of which are rules by the moon… i find myself getting really anxious and questioning everything during a full moon
I know for sure that more babies are born during a full moon. Just ask any Labor & Delivery nurse.
I also realized the one that I love is an A$##[email protected] around every full moon. So it’s true it makes people crazy. Just forgive and keep loving. What can we do?
So was mine. Completely insane and even aggressive. Every single full moon. He would destroy his entire household, try wreck the relationship, self destruct in many ways.
Eventually, after 2 years of utter insanity he got his way and I left.
At waxing moon he was normal and relaxt. Si it’s not an urban myth. I’ve seen it first hand and fortunately live to tell the tale.
As a female, a female, I have to say that for 10 + years at least I am the Moon shared common cycle. Menstrating during the five days the Moon is at its fullest. I also have noticed whenever I have been most emotional abnormally emotional is when there have been lunar event such as eclipse blood moon Harvest Moon. There is no doubt in my mind or body that the phases in correlations to the Moon affect me greatly.
I find that for at least 10 days BEFORE the full moon, I have really bad luck.
I first noticed it in November 2018 after several incidents happened, all before the full moon (which was on November 22, 2018). The first incident was that my mother was being nasty to me for no reason – I don’t neglect housework, I’m not lazy, I rarely drink, I don’t smoke, and I don’t abuse drugs so I don’t know why she was being so nasty to me.
The second (and most upsetting and memorable) incident, two days later, was that I went to my physician’s office. This was on November 13, 2018. The physician’s office also happened to be a local Walk-in Clinic available to the public. I went there, first thing in the morning. Even though I arrived before the clinic opened, there was already a huge lineup. (I counted 67 people. It has NEVER been that huge before.) When I got in, I saw someone who saw me two weeks before (my physician wasn’t available). The person (who will go by “Peter”; I can’t call him a doctor since he doesn’t deserve that title from the things he said to me) that I saw was nice to me the first time I saw him. The second time I saw Peter, he was a complete jerk. When he came in, he accused me of taking papers out of my own medical file – even though the medical file was outside the examination room in a file holder; I even emptied my pockets, purse, and told him to check the trash. The papers that he claimed were missing weren’t in any of those places and he didn’t apologize for the accusation. When I stated why I was there – to be refilled on an anti-anxiety medication, WHICH I HAD BEEN TAKING DAILY FOR THREE YEARS, he refused to write the prescription, even though he wrote it two weeks prior (I’m supposed to get monthly prescriptions from my family doctor who works at the clinic but wouldn’t be back until the following week). He told me that the only reason he wrote the prescription two weeks ago was because he pitied me! He also said he wouldn’t be writing the prescription this time. If he had just refused to write the prescription and none of the other things happened I would be frustrated but not upset. Also, what I was on was something that could give you seizures if you stopped it cold turkey. He didn’t care about that. Luckily I’m already on anti-seizure medication.
Which brings me to the third incident: The day after I saw Peter, I got a call saying I was approved for a new anti-seizure drug (which I ended up later dropping because it gave me suicidal thoughts). I started taking it and, the day after I started taking it, I was in the mall when I suddenly lost my balance and badly injured myself (I didn’t go to the hospital since I was worried that I might get someone like Peter). I couldn’t take the new anti-seizure medication at night because it gave me insomnia so I had to put up with the side effects – loss of balance being one of them. After November 22nd things were better and I didn’t associate it with the Full Moon until bad things such as people being extreme jerks happened in the same timespan. I researched it and think that what happened, especially the second incident, has to do with the Full Moon.
Yeah….my fiance act like an asshole every full moon. He ignore me and even get mad without any reason. I have to marked on my calendar of it’s full moon. Even though I try to anticipate that even, still I get sick and tired of this thing. Gosh….I really need a person who can handle this phenomenon.
HI Lucia, maybe plan to be away during those times. Be sure to check out our full Moon calendar so you know when!
I have sleep deprivation during a full moon. I also can’t sleep unless a room is completely black.
A friend of mine named Julie who works at a hospital in AZ, I’m not a hundred percent sure what she does though, I know she’s not a nurse exactly, said that the hospital is usually more filled up around the time of a full moon, and we were talking and I was very emotional and just weird and she told me to look outside… Sure enough, a full moon was out there. But it also could be PMS…….. Anyways, I’m not superstitious but I think that the time may affect people in some way- science doesn’t quite make every answer sufficient.
I went bat sh angry and sent a billion emails this morning. My real email, my real name. I knew it was unreasonable but I couldn’t control myself. I do this every time I feel disrespected. And I won’t stop until there’s resolution. I wrote more emails trying to atone what I’d written and bury it, but all my emails came out full of expletives. I could not stop, something was pushing me to do this. I love the full moon. I’ve never made any connection. I’m in my 50’s now. I saw a beautiful moon out the window. Then suddenly it hit me: what if…? I mean I had heard the stories about emergency personnel.
I shrugged it off. I’m not a cancer, I don’t have Cancer in my 3 primary signs. I woke up an hour ago and that’s all I could think about. I just did a search to find out when was the full moon last month, and then I went in my email to research the last “episode” I had. I thought we were in the last of December. But no: the date coincided exactly to the last time I did this… only much worse! Wow! Now I’m wondering. I always thought it was PMDD but that’s behind me. So what if??? Am I gonna have to make like Larry Talbot and have myself chained in a basement somewhere away from my front door and my computer and phone? I’ve seen when things affect me, and I always thought it was the monthly thing, and I’ve made it a point to post nasty comments randomly online: that way I was able to maintain a peaceful real life. Once I closed off, it never happened, it never existed. Now it turns out, I’m doing it with my real name, from my real – unblocked – phone number, and my real email…
I can’t believe it’s taken me this long to realize this! What are we supposed to do? Why are some of us more prone to being influenced by a full moon? Well, here’s a major case where “Love is NOT the answer”! You’re not safe from this even if you love looking at the full moon as much as I do. What to do now? I feel like I’m on a roller coaster all over again, and I wanna get off. Is there any way to counteract this insanity that comes with a full moon? You know, if there were a god out there… why didn’t they make it so that the full moon makes us more productive, thinner, more kind and positive etc.?
Why does this god-thing want us violent and mad? Maybe there are no gods but only devils? “If there is a god… must it be sane?”
There is not positivity without negativity to make you appreciate the positivity. The full moon brings me bad luck and dark moods, very emotional and hopeless feelings. It’s real. But we can’t change the nature of the cosmos. Just be aware of when the full moon is on its way and brace ourselves for the roller coaster. Or baricade ourselves inside our homes with lots of stuffed animals and a good supply of our favorite comfort foods until it passes. 😉
I just want to Say that all the Comments made before me prove one thing ! I don’t want to Debate it or ever check this again ? But why Jim one would ask ! I had many things go wrong since last nite I seen the moon was full after we got snow here in Conn , and said just going to put it out of my mind ! Today was such a weird day I’m not going into detail , After words I had with a person I never seen or met on the phone for 2 hours they keep sending me either to no one or Someone that also was dumb ,so I said the following to her — Are you ready ? I said I’m so confused by you people —- I said to her I would rather shoot myself then call here again ,,so ten minutes later 6 cops at my door one yelling with pointed rifle at me ,PUT YOUR HANDS UP ! Police came in my house took my weapon that was locked up in my room and said I can come back for it Friday . So I goggled full moon I got into this so you figure it out ! Don’t ask me because it is true
Hello I am from India.we have so many secrets related to moon scripted in ancient documents (Upnishad , Tripitak etc. )..”Full moon day” , here we call it “Poornima” ..And all our great saint gain knowledge on full moon day (is it just a coincidence?)
After that we call that day on there name like “Gautama the buddha” -“Buddh poornima”..
There is something secret behind it…But thought process of western philosopher, scientist, psychologist and doctors is so “Mathematical, technical”.
Here we call sun a creater, earth is parent and moon a destroyer…Like three phases- Plus-Nuetral-Minus…We belive all three have effect on us.
Yes! I have an autistic adult son, and I work autistic teenagers for living, no one can tell me that all 17 of them not sleeping during the week of a full moon, is a coincidence. It’s usually a couple days before the full moon that we see the worst behavior, violence, combativeness, screaming, agitation, and not sleeping
I have trouble going to sleep when there’s a full or new moon. It’s 2:00 am and I’m still not sleepy.