CHICAGO — It's been a gloomy month for Chicago, which has had only five — maybe six — days with sun this January.
But AccuWeather meteorologist John Gresiak said there was an upside to all the cloudy weather: Temperatures have been running 5 degrees warmer than normal this month, even though there was a cold spell at the start of January.
That's because Chicago's been getting air from the south, which is milder, more moist and "tends to be a lot cloudier," Gresiak said.
Normally Chicago winters get drier, cold air from Canada, which is why some of our sunniest days are also among the coldest, Gresiak said.
Winters aren't usually particularly sunny in Chicago, but data shows the city typically averages about 13 days with sunny or partly sunny conditions.
“January, I would think, is not typically one of the sunniest months, anyhow,” Gresiak said, laughing.
And though Chicago's getting hit with chillier temperatures the rest of this week (and next week), don't expect sun anytime soon. It'll be cloudy with snow flurries for a while, Gresiak said.
“There can be some, but it looks like we’re still in a pattern favoring a lot of clouds,” Gresiak said.
If you're missing the sun, you can try to soak up some rays with bright indoor lighting or with a lamp that mimics the light spectrum of the sun, Gresiak said.
And keep an eye out for seasonal affective disorder, which can lead to depression, energy loss and moodiness, according to the Mayo Clinic. Light therapy, medication and psychotherapy can help treat seasonal affective disorder, according to the clinic, but you should see a doctor.