Loneliness can affect anyone at any point in their lives and can have an impact on our health, wellbeing, productivity and self-esteem. In a recent survey 35% of Staffordshire residents reported that loneliness and isolation was a concern to them and 80% were worried about not seeing family and friends – due to the impact of Coronavirus.
Feelings of loneliness are personal so everyone’s experience of loneliness will be different. Loneliness is an emotional state of feeling separate and disconnected from others. It’s important to understand that loneliness is not always the same as being alone or isolated. Loneliness may be triggered by a change in circumstances or significant life event.
Loneliness can have a huge impact on our physical and mental health. Those who are lonely may have feelings of sadness or low mood as well as low self-esteem. People experiencing loneliness may feel embarrassed to admit that they are feeling lonely.
In terms of physical health, it’s thought that loneliness can increase the likelihood of heart and lung related illnesses, fatigue and pain.
If you or someone you know is feeling lonely, there are some small steps you can take to help beat loneliness. Here are some practical tips:
It can be difficult for people to admit or recognise that they are feeling lonely and even harder for them to ask for help. If you know someone who you think may be experiencing loneliness there are some small steps you can take to help you recognise the issue and support them to feel better.
Across Staffordshire there are many organisations that offer services to help you to deal with loneliness from telephone befriending, interest and hobby groups, online social events, online courses and much more. You can visit the Staffordshire Connects website to search for an organisation that’s right for you.
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