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Loneliness - what characteristics and circumstances are associated with feeling lonely?

The Office of National Statistics (ONS) has recently published an article on loneliness, as part of work to help inform the Government's strategy to alleviate loneliness. Dawn Snape, Assistant Director for the ONS's Wellbeing, Inequalities, Sustainability and Environment (WISE) Division said:

"As part of our work on national wellbeing, we have spent time examining the characteristics and circumstances that are associated with people's feelings of loneliness. Both personal and social connections can have an important effect on our personal well-being. This is why we've looked at factors including people's trust in others in their local areas, and a feeling of belonging to their neighbourhood."

The article shows that five per cent of adults in England report feeling lonely "often" or "always". Based on data collected for the Community Life Survey (CLS) 2016-17, the findings show:

- Younger adults aged 16 - 24 report feeling lonely more often than those in older age groups.

- Women report feeling lonely more often than men.

- Those single or widowed are at particular risk of experiencing loneliness more often.

- People in poor health or who have conditions they describe as "limiting" are also at particular risk of feeling lonely more often.

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