According to the WHO, social support networks can have a significant positive effect on health. In fact, many countries are now treating loneliness as a health priority.
Social connection is crucial for both mental and physical health. Some researchers even believe that relationships are a biological need and vital to our well-being and survival.
The world is currently dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic, and health organizations around the globe are urging people to practice physical distancingTrusted Source.
Physical distancing is an effective method for preventing the spread of SARS-CoV-2, but it may lead to loneliness.
Age and underlying health conditions are also risk factorsTrusted Source for developing severe COVID-19 symptoms.
The best way to protect vulnerable people is to practice physical distancing, but this can also exacerbate loneliness in people who already feel isolated.
Some societal trends may also cause social disconnection. For example, the average household size has decreased, and many more couples are deciding not to have children.