Virtual contact in pandemic prompts over 60s’ loneliness
27 July, 2021
Older adults who had more virtual contact than their peers during the pandemic actually experienced increased loneliness, according to new research published today.
The study, published in ‘Frontiers in Sociology’, found virtual interaction—including things like phone calls, texting, online audio and video chat— was not helpful on its own as an alternative to face-to-face time for people over 60.
The pandemic severely curtailed face-to-face contact between households, particularly for older adults, due to their high risk of developing severe illness if infected by COVID-19.
“This study is among the first to comparatively assess the association between social interactions across households and mental well-being in the COVID-19 pandemic,” says UBC sociologist Dr. Yue Qian, a co-author of the study.
- Media release