Like it or not, we all need human companions to survive; we need our families, friends to survive as our relationships are very important for not only our emotional fulfilment but also out behavioural adjustment and our cognitive functions.
Relationships foster values or selflessness, cooperation, empathy but what happens when one is isolated from people? We all feel lonely at some point in their lives, but chronic loneliness is when one goes for days and months without experiencing meaningful human contact and this is a bigger killer than obesity itself.
Apart from the deep sense of sadness it loneliness creates, chronic loneliness can also be life-threatening. Below are some of the health repercussions of living a lonely life.
Depression: “Among the mental effects of loneliness is depression, studies suggest that socially isolated individuals, especially young ones are at risk for developing depression; although the prevalence of depression can differ with different age groups, the link between loneliness and depression remains stable and apart from triggering depressive episodes, loneliness causes low self-esteem and can also increase perceived stress, fear of negative evaluation, anxiety, anger, pessimism”.