The human being is a social creature so now matter how much your profess to “hate people” there is always a benefit to being with others. Loneliness kills and, in fact, it’s more deadly than obesity. Obese individuals are 18% more likely to die than than people of a normal weight, while lonely people are 50% more likely to die then their unlonely counterparts. That’s not even the worst of it though; it seems that loneliness is growing and spreading. In the 1980’s, 20% of Americans reported themselves as being lonely, today it’s 40%.
Loneliness isn’t just killing us, though, it’s the cause of a number of conditions that contribute to a lowered quality of life, especially in older adults. Breast cancer and loneliness are also related. Socially isolated women have a 66% greater risk of death from breast cancer than socially connected women. Lonely adults are far more likely to suffer from sleeping disorders, self-destructive behaviors, increased stress and lowered immune systems.
Quality relationships, as a whole, are dropping. Our perceived need for friends versus actual number is friends severely lacking and the average number of people reporting they have zero close confidants is on the rise. Social media seemed to be the solution to our loneliness but it has only fueled our isolation and made us feel worse. Increased connection with people does not equate human contact.
Take a look at this infographic for more on the loneliness crisis. Let us know what you think in the comments and don’t forget to like and share.