“Shelter-in-place orders, physical distancing, and mask requirements have led to increased isolation, especially for people living alone. Isolation can lead to feelings of loneliness. Even before the pandemic, loneliness was a serious issue for many people.
If unchecked, loneliness can have negative effects on mental and physical health, including increased blood pressure, sleep deprivation, depression, anxiety, and a higher risk for suicide.
“We are social creatures and thrive on human interaction,” said Heather Tegeler, a licensed marriage and family therapist at Kaiser Permanente in Northern California. “When that is lacking, it can be hard to manage and cope with daily life.”
“Loneliness can be serious and should not be ignored,” Tegeler said.”