Loneliness Matters: A Theoretical and Empirical Review of Consequences and Mechanisms

Abstract

As a social species, humans rely on a safe, secure social surround to survive and thrive. Perceptions of social isolation, or loneliness, increase vigilance for threat and heighten feelings of vulnerability while also raising the desire to reconnect. Implicit hypervigilance for social threat alters psychological processes that influence physiological functioning, diminish sleep quality, and increase morbidity and mortality. The purpose of this paper is to review the features and consequences of loneliness within a comprehensive theoretical framework that informs interventions to reduce loneliness. We review physical and mental health consequences of loneliness, mechanisms for its effects, and effectiveness of extant interventions. Features of a loneliness regulatory loop are employed to explain cognitive, behavioral, and physiological consequences of loneliness and to discuss interventions to reduce loneliness. Loneliness is not simply being alone. Interventions to reduce loneliness and its health consequences may need to take into account its attentional, confirmatory, and memorial biases as well as its social and behavioral effects.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.

References

  1. 1.

    Berguno G, Leroux P, McAinsh K, Shaikh S. Children's experience of loneliness at school and its relation to bullying and the quality of teacher interventions. Qualitative Report. 2004; 9: 483–499.

    Google Scholar 

  2. 2.

    Pinquart M, Sorensen S. Influences on loneliness in older adults: A meta-analysis. Basic and Applied Social Psychology. 2001; 23: 245–266.

    Google Scholar 

  3. 3.

    Weeks DJ. A review of loneliness concepts, with particular reference to old age. International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry. 1994; 9: 345–355.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  4. 4.

    Peplau L, Perlman D. Perspectives on loneliness. In: Peplau L, Perlman D, eds. Loneliness: A sourcebook of current theory, research, and therapy. New York: Wiley; 1982.

    Google Scholar 

  5. 5.

    Hawkley LC, Hughes ME, Waite LJ, et al. From social structure factors to perceptions of relationship quality and loneliness: The Chicago Health, Aging, and Social Relations Study. Journal of Gerontology: Social Sciences. 2008; 63B: S375–S384.

    Google Scholar 

  6. 6.

    Wheeler L, Reis H, Nezlek J. Loneliness, social interaction, and sex roles. J Pers Soc Psychol. 1983; 45: 943–953.

    CAS  PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  7. 7.

    Russell D, Peplau LA, Cutrona CE. The revised UCLA Loneliness Scale: Concurrent and discriminant validity evidence. J Pers Soc Psychol. 1980; 39: 472–480.

    CAS  PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  8. 8.

    Cacioppo JT, Hawkley LC, Ernst JM, et al. Loneliness within a nomological net: An evolutionary perspective. Journal of Research in Personality. 2006; 40: 1054–1085.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  9. 9.

    Cacioppo JT, Hawkley LC. Perceived social isolation and cognition. Trends in Cognitive Sciences. 2009; 13: 447–454.

    PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  10. 10.

    Heinrich LM, Gullone E. The clinical significance of loneliness: A literature review. Clin Psychol Rev. 2006; 26: 695–718.

    PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  11. 11.

    Theeke LA. Predictors of loneliness in U.S. adults over age sixty-five. Arch Psychiatr Nurs. 2009; 23: 387–396.

    PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  12. 12.

    Caspi A, Harrington H, Moffitt TE, Milne BJ, Poulton R. Socially isolated children 20 years later: Risk of cardiovascular disease. Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 2006; 160: 805–811.

    PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  13. 13.

    Eaker ED, Pinsky J, Castelli WP. Myocardial infarction and coronary death among women: Psychosocial predictors from a 20-year follow-up of women in the Framingham Study. Am J Epidemiol. 1992; 135: 854–864.

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  14. 14.

    Olsen RB, Olsen J, Gunner-Svensson F, Waldstrøm B. Social networks and longevity. A 14 year follow-up study among elderly in Denmark. Soc Sci Med. 1991; 33: 1189–1195.

    CAS  PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  15. 15.

    Penninx BW, van Tilburg T, Kriegsman DM, et al. Effects of social support and personal coping resources on mortality in older age: The Longitudinal Aging Study Amsterdam. Am J Epidemiol. 1997; 146: 510–519.

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  16. 16.

    Seeman T. Health promoting effetcs of friends and family on health outcomes in older adults. American Journal of Health Promotion. 2000; 14: 362–370.

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  17. 17.

    Shiovitz-Ezra S, Ayalon L. Situational versus chronic loneliness as risk factors for all-cause mortality. Int Psychogeriatr. 2010; 22: 455–462.

    PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  18. 18.

    Sugisawa H, Liang J, Liu X. Social networks, social support, and mortality among older people in Japan. J Gerontol. 1994; 49: S3–13.

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  19. 19.

    Thurston RC, Kubzansky LD. Women, loneliness, and incident coronary heart disease. Psychosom Med. 2009; 71: 836–842.

    PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  20. 20.

    Hawkley LC, Cacioppo JT. Aging and loneliness: Downhill quickly? Current Directions in Psychological Science. 2007; 16: 187–191.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  21. 21.

    Hawkley LC, Masi CM, Berry JD, Cacioppo JT. Loneliness is a unique predictor of age-related differences in systolic blood pressure. Psychol Aging. 2006; 21: 152–164.

    PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  22. 22.

    Hawkley LC, Thisted RA, Masi CM, Cacioppo JT. Loneliness predicts increased blood pressure: Five-year cross-lagged analyses in middle-aged and older adults. Psychol Aging. 2010; 25: 132–141.

    PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  23. 23.

    DeNiro DA. Perceived alienation in individuals with residual-type schizophrenia. Issues Ment Health Nurs. 1995; 16: 185–200.

    CAS  PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  24. 24.

    Neeleman J, Power MJ. Social support and depression in three groups of psychiatric patients and a group of medical controls. Soc Psychiatry Psychiatr Epidemiol. 1994; 29: 46–51.

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  25. 25.

    Richman NE, Sokolove RL. The experience of aloneness, object representation, and evocative memory in borderline and neurotic patients. Psychoanalytic Psychology. 1992; 9: 77–91.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  26. 26.

    Goldsmith SK, Pellmar TC, Kleinman AM, Bunney WE. Reducing Suicide: A National Imperative. Washington, DC: National Academy Press; 2002.

    Google Scholar 

  27. 27.

    Gow AJ, Pattie A, Whiteman MC, Whalley LJ, Deary IJ. Social support and successful aging: Investigating the relationships between lifetime cognitive change and life satisfaction. Journal of Individual Differences. 2007; 28: 103–115.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  28. 28.

    Tilvis RS, Kahonen-Vare MH, Jolkkonen J, et al. Predictors of cognitive decline and mortality of aged people over a 10-year period. J Gerontol (A Biol Sci Med Sci). 2004; 59: M268–M274.

    Google Scholar 

  29. 29.

    Wilson RS, Krueger KR, Arnold SE, et al. Loneliness and risk of Alzheimer disease. Arch Gen Psychiatry. 2007; 64: 234–240.

    PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  30. 30.

    Cacioppo JT, Ernst JM, Burleson MH, et al. Lonely traits and concomitant physiological processes: The MacArthur social neuroscience studies. Int J Psychophysiol. 2000; 35: 143–154.

    CAS  PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  31. 31.

    Hawkley LC, Thisted RA, Cacioppo JT. Loneliness predicts reduced physical activity: Cross-sectional and longitudinal analyses. Health Psychol. 2009; 28: 354–363.

    PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  32. 32.

    Cacioppo JT, Hughes ME, Waite LJ, Hawkley LC, Thisted RA. Loneliness as a specific risk factor for depressive symptoms: Cross-sectional and longitudinal analyses. Psychology and Aging. 2006; 21: 140–151.

    PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  33. 33.

    Segrin C. Social skills, stressful events, and the development of psychosocial problems. Journal of Social & Clinical Psychology. 1999; 18: 14–34.

    Google Scholar 

  34. 34.

    Heikkinen R-L, Kauppinen M. Depressive symptoms in late life: A 10-year follow-up. Arch Gerontol Geriat. 2004; 38: 239–250.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  35. 35.

    Wei M, Russell DW, Zakalik RA. Adult Attachment, Social Self-Efficacy, Self-Disclosure, Loneliness, and Subsequent Depression for Freshman College Students: A Longitudinal Study. Journal of Counseling Psychology. 2005; 52: 602–614.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  36. 36.

    Cacioppo JT, Hawkley LC, Thisted RA. Perceived social isolation makes me sad: Five year cross-lagged analysis of loneliness and depressive symptomatology in the Chicago Health, Aging, and Social Relations study. Psychol Aging. 2010; 25: 453–463.

    Google Scholar 

  37. 37.

    Newall N, Chipperfield J, Clifton R, et al. Causal beliefs, social participation, and loneliness among older adults: A longitudinal study. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships. 2009; 26: 273–290.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  38. 38.

    Tice DM, Bratslavsky E. Giving in to feel good: The place of emotion regulation in the context of general self-control. Psychological Inquiry. 2000; 11: 149–159.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  39. 39.

    McAuley E, Morris KS, Motl RW, et al. Long-term follow-up of physical activity behavior in older adults. Health Psychol. 2007; 26: 375–380.

    PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  40. 40.

    Penedo FJ, Dahn JR. Exercise and well-being: A review of mental and physical health benefits associated with physical activity. Curr Opin Psychiatr. 2005; 18: 189–193.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  41. 41.

    Lauder W, Mummery K, Jones M, Caperchione C. A comparison of health behaviours in lonely and non-lonely populations. Psychology, Health, and Medicine. 2006; 11: 233–245.

    PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  42. 42.

    Akerlind I, Hornquist JO. Loneliness and alcohol abuse: A review of evidences of an interplay. Soc Sci Med. 1992; 34: 405–414.

    CAS  PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  43. 43.

    Stranahan AM, Khalil D, Gould E. Social isolation delays the positive effects of running on adult neurogenesis. Nature Neurosci. 2006; 9: 526–533.

    CAS  PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  44. 44.

    Mullington JM, Haack M, Toth M, Serrador JM, Meier-Ewert HK. Cardiovascular, inflammatory, and metabolic consequences of sleep deprivation. Prog Cardiovasc Dis. 2009; 51: 294.

    CAS  PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  45. 45.

    Gangwisch JE, Heymsfield SB, Boden-Albala B, et al. Short sleep duration as a risk factor for hypertension: Analyses of the first national health and nutrition examination survey. Hypertension. 2006; 47: 833–839.

    CAS  PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  46. 46.

    King CR, Knutson KL, Rathouz PJ, et al. Short sleep duration and incident coronary artery calcification. JAMA. 2008; 300: 2859–2866.

    CAS  PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  47. 47.

    Kripke DF, Garfinkel L, Wingard DL, Klauber MR, Marler MR. Mortality associated with sleep duration and insomnia. Arch Gen Psychiatry. 2002; 59: 131–136.

    PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  48. 48.

    Ohayon MM. Prevalence and correlates of nonrestorative sleep complaints. Arch Intern Med. 2005; 165: 35–41.

    PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  49. 49.

    Cacioppo JT, Hawkley LC, Crawford LE, et al. Loneliness and health: Potential mechanisms. Psychosom Med. 2002; 64: 407–417.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  50. 50.

    Friedman EM, Hayney MS, Love GD, et al. Social relationships, sleep quality, and interleukin-6 in aging women. PNAS. 2005; 102: 18757–18762.

    CAS  PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  51. 51.

    Jacobs JM, Cohen A, Hammerman-Rozenberg R, Stessman J. Global sleep satisfaction of older people: The Jerusalem Cohort Study. J Am Geriatr Soc. 2006; 54: 325–329.

    PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  52. 52.

    Mahon NE. Loneliness and sleep during adolescence. Perceptual & Motor Skills. 1994; 78: 227–231.

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  53. 53.

    Cacioppo JT, Hawkley LC, Berntson GG, et al. Do lonely days invade the nights? Potential social modulation of sleep efficiency. Psychol Sci. 2002; 13: 385–388.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  54. 54.

    Akerstedt T, Hume K, Minors D, Waterhouse J. The meaning of good sleep: A longtitudinal study of polysomnography and subjective sleep quality. J Sleep Res. 2009; 3: 152–158.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  55. 55.

    Hawkley LC, Preacher KJ, Cacioppo JT. Loneliness impairs daytime functioning but not sleep duration. Health Psychol. 2010; 29: 124–129.

    PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  56. 56.

    Hawkley LC, Burleson MH, Berntson GG, Cacioppo JT. Loneliness in everyday life: Cardiovascular activity, psychosocial context, and health behaviors. J Pers Soc Psychol. 2003; 85: 105–120.

    PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  57. 57.

    Franklin SS, Gustin WI, Wong ND, et al. Hemodynamic patterns of age-related changes in blood pressure: The framingham heart study. Circulation. 1997; 96: 308–315.

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  58. 58.

    Schiffrin EL. Vascular stiffening and arterial compliance: Implications for systolic blood pressure. Am J Hypertens. 2004; 17: S39–S48.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  59. 59.

    Cheitlin MD. Cardiovascular physiology-changes with aging. The American Journal of Geriatric Cardiology. 2003; 12: 9–13.

    PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  60. 60.

    Folkow B, Svanborg A. Physiology of cardiovascular aging. Physiol Rev. 1993; 73: 725–764.

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  61. 61.

    Toro L, Marijic J, Nishimaru K, et al. Aging, ion channel expression, and vascular function. Vascular Pharmacology. 2002; 38: 73–80.

    CAS  PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  62. 62.

    Danesh J, Wheeler JG, Hirschfield GM, et al. C-reactive protein and other circulating markers of inflammation in the prediction of coronary heart disease. N Engl J Med. 2004; 350: 1387–1397.

    CAS  PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  63. 63.

    Yusuf S. Effect of potentially modifiable risk factors associated with myocardial infarction in 52 countries (the INTERHEART study). Lancet. 2004; 364: 937–952.

    PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  64. 64.

    Beevers G, Lip GY, O'Brien E. ABC of hypertension: The pathophysiology of hypertension. Br Med J (Clinical research ed). 2001; 322: 912–916.

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  65. 65.

    Black HR, Bakris GL, Elliott WJ. Hypertension: epidemiology, pathophysiology, diagnosis, and treatment. In: Fuster V, Alexander RW, O’Rourke RA, eds. Hurst's the Heart. 10th ed. New York: McGraw-Hill; 2001:1553-604.

    Google Scholar 

  66. 66.

    Guyenet PG. The sympathetic control of blood pressure. Nature Rev Neurosci. 2006; 7: 335–346.

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  67. 67.

    Girod JP, Brotman DJ. Does altered glucocorticoid homeostasis increase cardiovascular risk? Cardiovasc Res. 2004; 64: 217–226.

    CAS  PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  68. 68.

    Nijm J, Jonasson L. Inflammation and cortisol response in coronary artery disease. Ann Med. 2009; 41: 224–233.

    CAS  PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  69. 69.

    Whitworth JA, Schyvens CG, Zhang Y, Mangos GJ, Kelly JJ. Glucocorticoid-induced hypertension: From mouse to man. Clin Exp Pharmacol Physiol. 2001; 28: 993–996.

    CAS  PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  70. 70.

    Kiecolt-Glaser JK, Ricker D, George J, et al. Urinary cortisol levels, cellular immunocompetency, and loneliness in psychiatric inpatients. Psychosom Med. 1984; 46: 15–23.

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  71. 71.

    Steptoe A, Owen N, Kunz-Ebrecht SR, Brydon L. Loneliness and neuroendocrine, cardiovascular, and inflammatory stress responses in middle-aged men and women. Psychoneuroendocrinology. 2004; 29: 593–611.

    CAS  PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  72. 72.

    Pressman SD, Cohen S, Miller GE, et al. Loneliness, social network size, and immune response to influenza vaccination in college freshmen. Health Psychol. 2005; 24: 297–306.

    PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  73. 73.

    Adam EK, Hawkley LC, Kudielka BM, Cacioppo JT. Day-to-day dynamics of experience-cortisol associations in a population-based sample of older adults. Proc Nat Acad Sci USA. 2006; 103: 17058–17063.

    CAS  PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  74. 74.

    Dickerson SS, Kemeny ME. Acute stressors and cortisol responses: A theoretical integration and synthesis of laboratory research. Psychol Bull. 2004; 130: 355–391.

    PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  75. 75.

    Cole SW, Hawkley LC, Arevalo JM, et al. Social regulation of gene expression in human leukocytes. Genome Biology. 2007; 8: R189.181–R189.113.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  76. 76.

    Cole SW. Social regulation of leukocyte homeostasis: The role of glucocorticoid sensitivity. Brain Behav Immun. 2008; 22: 1049–1055.

    CAS  PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  77. 77.

    Levine S, Mody T. The long-term psychobiological consequences of intermittent postnatal separation in the squirrel monkey. Neurosci Biobehav Rev. 2003; 27: 83–89.

    PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  78. 78.

    Pan Y, Liu Y, Young KA, Zhang Z, Wang Z. Post-weaning social isolation alters anxiety-related behavior and neurochemical gene expression in the brain of male prairie voles. Neurosci Lett. 2009; 454: 67–71.

    CAS  PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  79. 79.

    Poletto R, Steibel JP, Siegford JM, Zanella AJ. Effects of early weaning and social isolation on the expression of glucocorticoid and mineralocorticoid receptor and 11beta-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase 1 and 2 mRNAs in the frontal cortex and hippocampus of piglets. Brain Res. 2006; 1067: 36–42.

    CAS  PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  80. 80.

    Dixon D, Cruess S, Kilbourn K, et al. Social Support Mediates Loneliness and Human Herpesvirus Type 6 (HHV-6) Antibody Titers. Journal of Applied Social Psychology. 2001; 31: 1111–1132.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  81. 81.

    Glaser R, Kiecolt-Glaser JK, Speicher CE, Holliday JE. Stress, loneliness, and changes in herpesvirus latency. J Behav Med. 1985; 8: 249–260.

    CAS  PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  82. 82.

    Kiecolt-Glaser JK, Garner W, Speicher C, et al. Psychosocial modifiers of immunocompetence in medical students. Psychosom Med. 1984; 46: 7–14.

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  83. 83.

    Straits-Troster KA, Patterson TL, Semple SJ, et al. The relationship between loneliness, interpersonal competence, and immunologic status in HIV-infected men. Psychology and Health. 1994; 9: 205–219.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  84. 84.

    Miller GE, Kemeny ME, Taylor SE, Cole SW, Visscher BR. Social relationships and immune processes in HIV seropositive gay and bisexual men. Ann Behav Med. 1997; 19: 139–151.

    CAS  PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  85. 85.

    Cattan M, White M. Developing evidence based health promotion for older people: A systematic review and survey of health promotion interventions targeting social isolation and loneliness among older people. Internet Journal of Health Promotion. 1998; 13: 1–9.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  86. 86.

    Cattan M, White M, Bond J, Learmouth A. Preventing social isolation and loneliness among older people: A systematic review of health promotion interventions. Aging & Society. 2005; 25: 41–67.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  87. 87.

    Findlay R: Interventions to reduce social isolation amongst older people: Where is the evidence? Abstracts in Social Gerontology. 2004; 47.

  88. 88.

    McWhirter BT. Loneliness: A Review of Current Literature, with Implications for Counseling and Research. Journal of Counseling and Development. 1990; 68: 417–422.

    Google Scholar 

  89. 89.

    Perese E, Wolf M. Combating loneliness among persons with severe mental illness: Social network interventions' characteristics, effectiveness, and applicability. Issues in Mental Health Nursing. 2005; 26: 591–609.

    PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  90. 90.

    Rook KS. Promoting social bonding: Strategies for helping the lonely and socially isolated. Am Psychol. 1984; 39: 1389–1407.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  91. 91.

    Lipsey MW, Wilson DB. Practical Meta-Analysis. Thousand Oaks: Sage; 2001.

    Google Scholar 

  92. 92.

    Cacioppo JT, Patrick B. Loneliness: Human Nature and the Need for Social Connection. New York: Norton; 2008.

    Google Scholar 

  93. 93.

    Routasalo PE, Tilvis RS, Kautiainen H, Pitkala KH. Effects of psychosocial group rehabilitation on social functioning, loneliness and well-being of lonely, older people: Randomized controlled trial. J Adv Nurs. 2009; 65: 297–305.

    PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  94. 94.

    Pitkala KH, Routasalo P, Kautiainen H, Tilvis RS. Effects of psychosocial group rehabilitation on health, use of health care services, and mortality of older persons suffering from loneliness: A randomized, controlled trial. J Gerontol (A Biol Sci Med Sci). 2009; 64: 792–800.

    Google Scholar 

  95. 95.

    Wilson DS. Evolution for Everyone: How Darwin's Theory Can Change the Way We Think About Our Lives. New York: Delacorte; 2007.

    Google Scholar 

  96. 96.

    Cacioppo JT, Amaral DG, Blanchard JJ, et al. Social neuroscience: Progress and implications for mental health. Perspectives on Psychological Science. 2007; 2: 99–123.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  97. 97.

    Donaldson ZR, Young LJ. Oxytocin, vasopressin, and the neurogenetics of sociality. Science. 2008; 322: 900–904.

    CAS  PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  98. 98.

    Lovejoy CO. Reexamining human origins in light of Ardipithecus ramidus. Science. 2009; 326: 74e71–74e78.

    Google Scholar 

  99. 99.

    Emler N. Gossip, reputation, and adaptation. In: Goodman R, Ben Ze'ev A, eds. Good Gossip. Lawrence: University of Kansas Press; 1994: 34–46.

    Google Scholar 

  100. 100.

    Kahneman D, Krueger AB, Schkade DA, Schwarz N, Stone AA. A survey method for characterizing daily life experience: The day reconstruction method. Science. 2004; 306: 1776–1780.

    CAS  PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Affiliations

Authors

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Louise C. Hawkley Ph.D..

Additional information

This research was supported by Grant R01-AG036433-01 and R01-AG034052 from the National Institute on Aging and by the John Templeton Foundation.

About this article

Cite this article

Hawkley, L.C., Cacioppo, J.T. Loneliness Matters: A Theoretical and Empirical Review of Consequences and Mechanisms. ann. behav. med. 40, 218–227 (2010). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12160-010-9210-8

Download citation

Keywords

  • Loneliness
  • Regulatory loop
  • Physiology
  • Health behavior
  • Sleep
  • Intervention