Loneliness: is it a killer?

George asked the question on High Noon, and was joined by TCD psychologist Sabina Brennan.

Loneliness is a mismatch of what we 'need' and what we 'have' in terms of the quality & and quantity of our social relationships.

Trinity College psychologist Sabina Brennan joined George on High Noon today to tell him about the neurological impact being lonely can have.

A few facts on the issue include:

  • Loneliness doubles the risk of death among older people, and with 35% of Irish people over the age of 65 and living in their own homes reporting feelings of loneliness,
  • TILDA (The Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing) found women more likely to be lonely than men.
  • 18 to 34-year-olds were more likely to feel lonely than the over-55s -Mental Health Foundation 2010
  • 60% of lonely people are married
  • Loneliness is contagious on social networks
  • Just 10 minutes social interaction can increase brain performance. 


Listen to the full conversation, as well as the thoughts of people who suffer from loneliness,  you can click below.