10 Surprising Facts About Loneliness

Facts Loneliness

4. Loneliness can be contagious

Surprising Facts Loneliness contagious
10 Surprising Facts About Loneliness

Loneliness can get contagious and it has a certain social stigma attached to it.

It has been found by a study that it’s not only the lonely people who get pushed to the periphery of social circles but also their friends due to social conditioning and stigma attached to it.

Read 5 Truths About Loneliness And How To Deal With It

5. Loneliness can have physical effects

10 Surprising Facts About Loneliness
10 Surprising Facts About Loneliness

Loneliness can make our bodies feel under attack and can have adverse physiological effects. The effects of loneliness are almost similar to being in stress.

Our mind and body functions interdependently. When one stays in loneliness for a long span of time, our bodily resources to restore the lack of physical equilibrium will be slowly depleted leading to physical symptoms like stomach ache, headache, numbness in arms etc. It can increase blood pressure and cholesterol and put our nervous system on hyper active mode.

Chronic loneliness can lead to various psychiatric disorders like depression, alcohol abuse, child abuse, sleep problems, personality disorders and Alzheimer’s disease. (1) It can also cause gastrointestinal problems like lack of appetite, nausea, stomachache, stomach ulcers, indigestion etc.

6. Loneliness can affect your immune system

Surprising Facts Loneliness less immunity
10 Surprising Facts About Loneliness

When our body is under extreme stress, it signals our neurological system and immune system to stay on hyper alert mode.

Our immune system remains highly under pressure, working at its highest potential, when we are in chronic loneliness, to keep helping the body and the mind to cope with the situation. But once it’s depleted of its resources, the body starts signaling us to mend the situation through psychosomatic symptoms mentioned earlier.

Over time, loneliness can cause the immune system to function less efficiently, which can increase the risk of developing all kinds life style related illnesses.

7. Loneliness can be as dangerous as smoking

Surprising Facts Loneliness adverse affect
10 Surprising Facts About Loneliness

According to some psychologists, loneliness can be as dangerous as smoking and can adversely affect our health and longevity.

Holt-Lunstad published two major studies that establish the overall effect of loneliness as a risk factor for risk or early death.(2) Holt-Lunstad’s first study involved 3 lakh participants showed that scoring low on the indicators of social connection carried a similar risk to smoking up to 15 cigarettes per day. Participants with stronger social interactions were found to have a 50% increased likelihood of survival.

The second study involved 3.4 million participants and focused on subjective loneliness and actual, physical social isolation, and found that both can lead to a 30% increased risk of premature death.

Other studies have also shown that chronic loneliness can increase the risk of early death by 14%.

Read Loneliness In Children: This Is What You Can Do As A Parent

1 thought on “10 Surprising Facts About Loneliness”

  1. I have noted lonely people turn to animals to fill a void. And over too long a time span with their pet, they actually reject other humans who show desire to bong with them. I have found this to be the case with two former boyfriends. They were single for many years and just had their pets. I felt I came second to those animals which created my own feelings of subjective loneliness. I felt they lost desire to interact on pretty much every level. It was very boring, depressing, rejecting and debilitatingly lonely for me. Heartbreaking to be pushed away. Disgusting to see animals receive the loving connection that I craved.

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