Social Isolation Can Be Deadly
Some social scientist have attributed technology and housing trends to contributing to social isolation. A 2015 study from Perspectives on Psychological Science on 'Loneliness and Social Isolation as Risk Factors for Mortality' shows supporting data that social isolation could be a serious health risk even greater than smoking and obesity, resulting in mortality.
Social isolation increases the likelihood of mortality between 29% to 32%.
Living alone, having few social network ties, and having infrequent social contact are all markers of social isolation.
This is no surprise that technology has contributed to social isolation. The need for physical interaction is compensated through social media. Texting has taken the place of phone calls. In regards to housing trends, more and more people are living alone. Take a look at how houses are constructed now, the porches used to be built mostly in the front. Now houses are being built with decks and we don't see people sitting on their front porches to wave or chat.
Overall, the findings from this meta-analysis are consistent with prior evidence that has demonstrated higher survival rates for those who are more socially connected (Holt-Lunstad et al., 2010)
There's something to be said for physical in real life interactions. A hug a day really could keep the doctor away. With that said, if you're feeling lonely here's some great ideas to connect with other people.