In a study published on 14 August 2018, researchers Eti Ben Simon and Matthew P Walker unveiled four interesting connections between sleep and loneliness.
In our last blog we examined the first two connections that their research unveiled between sleep and feelings of loneliness.
In this blog we look at the last two connections their research made between sleep and social isolation.
Firstly, a sleep-deprived, lonely person becomes less likely to allow people to come into contact with them as they choose to increase their social distance.
The study showed that when people are sleep-deprived, lonely people are more inclined to keep a greater physical distance from others, compared to when they are fully rested. The energy needed to interact is just too great- they do not want people in their space and definitely do not want to be touched. This increases their feeling of loneliness and social isolation.
Secondly, well-rested people are less likely to want to get close or interact with a sleep-deprived person.
The researchers commented that sleep-deprived people may give off a lonely vibe and are also judged by others to be lonelier and less socially “attractive” when compared with pictures of their fully rested selves. So not only are the sleep-deprived people avoiding society, but society is more likely to avoid them too. This sets up a vicious cycle of social isolation.
This small study may have unveiled a link between the rise of sleep deprivation and the rise of social isolation and loneliness in our modern society. Sleep boosts our mood, our appearance and our social attractiveness and sleep loss impacts more than ourselves- it impacts all those around us.
Get to bed if you want to get out into the world- bright and bushy tailed.
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