Posted on Aug 30, 2019

Mankind is a social species, and no one can live without support and everyday social interactions. Even more, social support influences not only our mental but also physical health.

Of course, our body needs stress from time to time, and periods of loneliness are necessary for us as completely natural part of life.

But every second from 20% to 40% of the adult population feels lonesome and go through all physical transformations that are caused by it. About 30% of loners are constantly isolated, and this can be perilous.

So now loneliness is turning into an epidemic. Indeed, it is even more dangerous for health than anxiety and depression, which we usually fear.

Researchers at the University of Health Sciences, Medical Informatics, and Technology (UMIT, Hall, Austria) and the University of the Balearic Islands (Palma de Mallorca, Spain) have leaped to a conclusion, that social support has the analgesic effects. The results of the research were published in the Scandinavian Journal of Pain.

The researches tried to assess sensitivity to pressure pain in 48 heterosexual couples. Every participant experienced the experiment twice: alone and in the passive presence of their partner.

So, both men and women showed higher pain thresholds, tolerance and lower sensory in the presence of a partner. Partner’s dispositional empathy led to all these displayers.

Earlier it had been studied, that talking and touching could reduce pain, but this research showed, that even passive presence and empathy could buffer affective distress.

But that’s not the only advantage, which a relationship and support have in relation to health. Scientists from the United States have found that single people are more likely to get colds.

The researches made this conclusion after an experiment with almost 160 participants aged from 18 to 55 years. Volunteers spent several days in hospitals after rhinovirus under the close supervision of specialists. And loneliness affected how a person perceived this disease in a certain way.

People, who lived alone, more often grumbled at feeling sick and more intense symptoms of the disease than those who had enough communication and support. Also, lonely patients complained of feeling unwell even if their medical indicators did not change.

According to other studies, solitude is associated with high blood pressure and heart problems.

In addition, a meta-analysis of 70 studies, conducted in 2015, showed that loneliness increased the risk of probable death by 26%. And, for example, depression and anxiety disorder increase the risk of death only by 21%.

But these negative impacts will be decongested when the feeling of loneliness passes.

And the perfect measures for this are attempts to restore the meaning of life to people. For example, one charitable organization in Los Angeles brings together single elderly people and elementary school pupils. Older people help pupils with lessons and look after them, and this gives them a goal and helps to feel healthier.

And are you feeling lonely? Is it a comfortable experience for you or no?

Being a journalist is not only my profession but true purpose. I believe that there are no bad thing is our life, but only bad approach to them. If you look with positive on every situation, it will definitely change for the better.