Is Loneliness Worse for You Than Smoking?

© Danil Devsky / Stocksy United

© Danil Devsky / Stocksy United

When we think of loneliness, we often think of elderly and homebound individuals. But in our plugged-in and busy modern society, more people of all ages report being lonely. 

The U.K. recently hired a minister for loneliness to address the loneliness and social isolation problem across the pond. And former U.S. Surgeon General Vivek H. Murthy has called loneliness a growing health epidemic; almost half of American adults admit to feeling lonely. 

Here in the Pacific Northwest, the Seattle freeze can leave newcomers feeling lonely. In some areas of King County, more than 26 percent of people sometimes, rarely, or never get the social support they need, according to the 2017 Greater Seattle Civic Health Index.

Read the Right as Rain by UW Medicine article