KEEP IN MIND
Being with people can improve your health
WRITTEN BY GREG HARRIS
ILLUSTRATED BY MICHAEL BYERS
Loneliness can be bad for your health. Studies have shown it can increase the risk for high blood pressure, diabetes, heart
disease—even early death.
Loneliness can affect anyone, anywhere.
Simply defined as being emotionally
and socially isolated, feelings such as
sadness, emptiness and anxiety often go
along with loneliness.
Although all of us are likely to
experience periods of loneliness in our
lifetimes, it’s important to take steps to
deal with it if it’s a regular occurrence.
“Loneliness can be a risk factor for
developing depression, anxiety or even
psychotic illnesses,” says Dr. Adam
Abba-Aji, an Edmonton psychiatrist and
site chief of Addiction and Mental Health
at the University of Alberta Hospital.
Loneliness can also be physically
harmful, he says. Studies have shown
it can increase the risk for high blood
pressure, diabetes, cardiovascular disease
and even early death.
So many people in Britain are lonely
that the national government recently
appointed a minister for loneliness.
Getting over loneliness takes skills and