COVID-19 blew up the ‘epidemic of loneliness’

Sarah Pressman of the University of California, Irvine, underscores Cacioppo’s work in her research demonstrating that loneliness can actually cut the lifespan by 70 percent—compared to obesity (20 percent) and smoking (50 percent). Loneliness can reduce our ability to manage stress, make us fatigued, and affect our sleep quality and concentration. It’s also a contributing factor in drug and alcohol use and abuse.