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Shun loneliness to Sleep better

  • 02 January 2019
  • By Shveta Bhagat

Did you know there is a definite link between sleep deprivation and loneliness? Researchers claim they are both closely related and it is a chain cycle with one spurring the other. Loneliness is an increasing phenomenon despite the social media surge and a lot of independent single adults despite being “connected” are in reality disconnected and living in their own island.

According to a new study not only can sleeplessness make us feel more detached and lonelier but it also sends signals into the world that keep people away, therefore jeopardizing our chances.

In the lab experiment, a small group of participants underwent alternating nights of proper sleep and deprived sleep and were measured on how much distance they kept socially with people over a video taken. It was observed that when sleep deprived they preferred keeping a distance up to 60 percent as compared to when well rested.

Infact sleep deprivation and loneliness could go both ways. If suffering from loneliness the person can feel insecure and unsafe, therefore not being able to enjoy deep sleep and either sleeping light or developing insomnia. The restorative benefits of sleep can be seen only when one is well rested and being able to sleep in a deep state.

Scientists claim that since we were originally tribal we inherently are community loving and any sense of isolation leaves us feeling threatened and on guard as opposed to the feeling of safety and reassurance we experience in a group. Loneliness is supposed to be part of our evolutionary history where our forefathers stuck together in a group in order to succeed.

Emotions of depression, anxiety, restlessness is all linked to present day culture of being connected to one another superficially or in the virtual world yet feeling lonely in every day lives. These feelings have us tossing and turning mulling over our existence even more and finally coming in the way of our well being. Some researchers have even coined a term for the lonely smartphone surfing lot, calling them “social lepers”.

Counselors suggest the need for such people to find time from their busy work schedules to join hobby groups and for real and not online, to make more connections and reclaim that sense of belonging and security. While enjoying one’s company is good, interaction with one another is very important for mental, emotional and physical health. The sense of balance that comes with being in a community set up participating collectively and sharing each other’s lives, lends feeling supported and more at peace.

It is also imperative to enroll in activities that leave us feeling good about ourselves and overall happy as happiness adds to our confidence, makes us more outgoing and finally keeps us feeling well and sleeping like a baby.


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