Key findings include:
- Over 2-in-3 Aussies find it hard to identify loneliness in themselves or in others.
- 53% of Aussies feel lonely on one or more days during the week, with 25% city loneliness on three of more days.
- Young and single Aussies are the most lonely (73%), with only 36% seeking support to manage.
Researcher at the University of Melbourne, Dr Frederic Kiernan says, "Loneliness is a complex feeling and while not all loneliness is created equally, the pandemic has certainly amplified how many people experience it and how often.
"The new research highlights the misconceptions and misunderstandings around the loneliness experience, and also the denial that so many struggle to face. Now more than ever, people will need new ways to support their mental health and, as a result, improve their physical wellbeing."
It's no surprise that, loneliness levels are lower amongst those who are 'settling down' as a couple (66%), established families (58%), elderly and alone people (51%) and elderly and partnered people (31%).
The data also found that when it comes to reducing the loneliness experience, top barriers are fear of burdening others (28%), finding the words to describe the feeling properly (22%) and feeling that people won't 'get it' (20%).
To help spark a conversation on loneliness, Medibank has announced the launch of We Are Lonely, a podcast featuring guests Hugo Weaving, Briggs, Tash Sultana, Patricia Piccinini, Darren Hayes and more.
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