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Lonely older people are living shorter with poorer health, finds new study

Covid preventive measures seem to further exacerbate the risk of loneliness


Key points from article :

"Lonely older adults can expect to live a shorter life than their peers," - Rahul Malhotra, lead study author.

People aged 60, who perceive themselves to be sometimes lonely or mostly lonely, can expect to live 3-5 years less.

At ages 70 and 80, lonely older persons can expect to live 3-4 years and 2-3 years less, respectively.

Researchers conducted a study on more than 2,000 older people in Singapore.

34% of them were lonely (male, 37%; female, 31%).

Loneliness increased with age, from 32% among those aged 60-69 years to 40% among those aged 80 and above.

Lowest (33%) among those with no formal education, and highest (38%) among those with higher-than-tertiary education.

Nearly 10% higher among seniors who lived alone (43%) compared to those who did not live alone (33%).

"..increasing policy interest in loneliness around the world," - Angelique Chan, senior study author.

Study by Duke-NUS Medical School and Nihon University published in the Journal of American Geriatrics Society.

Mentioned in this article:

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Angelique Chan

Associate Professor at National University of Singapore and Director of the Centre of Ageing Research & Education at Duke-NUS

Duke-NUS Medical School

Graduate medical school in collaboration with Duke University and the National University of Singapore

Journal of the American Geriatrics Society (JAGS)

Journal providing information about clinical aging research

Nihon university

Private university based from Tokyo

Rahul Malhotra

Physician, public health researcher and research head at Duke-NUS Medical School

Topics mentioned on this page:
Relationships, Life Expectancy