A Lonely Heart Could Worsen a Cold


 A cold is never fun, but it’s even more misery for folks who feel lonely, new research suggests.


“We think this is important, particularly because of the economic burden associated with the common cold,” said study co-author Angie LeRoy, a psychology graduate student at Rice University in Houston.

“Millions of people miss work each year because of it. And that has to do with how they feel, not necessarily with how much they’re blowing their noses,” she said in a university news release.

For the study, LeRoy and Rice psychologist Chris Fagundes used nose drops to deliberately infect a group of 159 volunteers with the cold virus. The participants were all unmarried and ranged from 18 to 55 years of age.

Each also filled out standard psychological questionnaires aimed at assessing their feelings of social isolation.

According to LeRoy, “Research has shown that loneliness puts people at risk for early death and other physical illnesses. But nothing had been done to look at an acute but temporary illness that we’re all vulnerable to — the common cold.”

In their new research, the investigators tracked the mental and physical health of the volunteers as they were quarantined — often with a nasty cold — in hotel rooms for a period of five days, and for some time afterwards.

Would each participants’ mental state affect whether they caught the cold, or their symptoms?

First off, three-quarters of the participants did go on to develop a cold. But whether or not the participants were lonely didn’t seem to play a role in cold acquisition, the findings showed.

However, even though the study couldn’t prove cause-and-effect, there was a difference in terms of symptoms.

Fagundes and LeRoy found that people who said they had less “social support” had cold symptoms that were more severe compared to people who felt more socially included.

And this was true regardless of the size of an individual’s social network, the study authors said.

“This paper is about the quality of your relationships, not the quantity,” LeRoy explained. “You can be in a crowded room and feel lonely. That perception is what seems to be important when it comes to these cold symptoms.”

The findings echo those of prior studies linking loneliness with physical ills, the researchers said.

“Previous research has shown that different psycho-social factors — like feeling rejected or feeling left out or not having strong social bonds with other people — do make people feel worse physically, mentally and emotionally,” LeRoy said.

Fagundes added that feeling alone is a form of mental stress, and stress is known to exacerbate illness. “Anytime you have an illness, it’s a stressor, and this phenomenon would probably occur,” he said.

LeRoy’s advice? Do what you can to get more socially active.

“If you build those networks — consistently working on them and your relationships — when you do fall ill, it may not feel so bad,” she said.

The findings were published March 30 in Health Psychology.

SOURCE: Rice University and the American Psychological Association, news releases, March 30, 2017




    (April 7, 2017 - 10:02 am)

    I’ve beenn browsing onlie more than 4 hourts today, yet I never found anyy
    interesting article liuke yours. It iis pretyy woorth ehough
    ffor me. In myy opinion, iff alll webmasters aand bloggerrs mzde gpod ontent as yoou did, thhe nnet
    wiill be a lott more useful tan evdr before. I hhave been brolwsing onpine more thawn 4 hours today, yet I nwver found
    any interestfing article ike yours. It iis pretty worth ennough for me.
    Personally, iff alll webb owsners and blogger ade gopod content ass you did, the web wijll bbe a
    loot mlre usefuul thwn evsr before. It iis perfecct
    tie to make some plawns forr the future and iit iis tine too
    bbe happy. I’ve read this posst aand if I coluld I ish tto sugest youu solme interestingg thinngs orr advice.
    Peehaps yyou couod write nerxt article referriing too thks article.
    I wixh too reead even mokre things aboujt it! http://Foxnews.org


    (April 15, 2017 - 6:16 am)

    Hello, i think that i saw you visited my site thus i
    came to “return the favor”.I am trying to find
    things to improve my site!I suppose its ok to
    use a few of your ideas!!

    top air purifiers

    (April 26, 2017 - 7:22 am)

    Some truly quality blogs on this site, stored to my bookmarks.

    aspirateur sans sac Silencieux auchan

    (May 6, 2017 - 10:37 pm)

    Vous pouvez passer votre tremendous Dyson sur un tapis 50 fois, je passe derrière et j’ enlève un bon centimètre de poussière, avant de
    parler de ce que vous ne connaissez pas, faite
    un essais en demandant une demo pro aqua, après on pourra discuté.


    (May 19, 2017 - 12:26 pm)

    I really love your blog.. Excellent colors & theme.
    Did you build this site yourself? Please reply
    back as I’m attempting to create my own site and would like to know where you got this from or exactly what the theme is
    called. Thank you!

    buat email baru di gmail

    (May 27, 2017 - 1:29 am)

    It’s an remarkable piece of writing in support of all the web
    visitors; they will take advantage from it I am sure.

    antalya escort

    (May 29, 2017 - 6:33 am)

    Hі, the wɦole thing іs going perfectly here аnd ofcourse every one is sharing fаcts, tɦat’s аctually fine, keep ᥙp writing. http://www.timecode.org/

    baterie kuchenne

    (June 3, 2017 - 7:56 am)

    I simply could not go away your site before suggesting that
    I extremely loved the standard info a person provide in your visitors?
    Is gonna be back continuously in order to check up on new posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *