SUPPORT is available for people in Warwickshire feeling lonely and isolated as winter arrives.
Loneliness can affect anyone at any stage of their life. It is not just about being alone, although being alone can increase feelings of loneliness.
It can have a negative impact on mental and physical health. It can be a risk factor for depression and may also increase the risk of dementia.
Loneliness is also linked to heightened risk of developing coronary heart disease and stroke and as bad for health as smoking 15 cigarettes a day.
Warwickshire County Council’s website www.warwickshire.gov.uk/loneliness offers lots of information for anyone affected by loneliness and social isolation.
The issue is also being highlighted as part of the council’s wider winter wellness campaign to help people stay safe and healthy during the winter months which typically pose extra challenges for people, in particular older and more vulnerable residents. Visit www.warwickshire.gov.uk/winterwellness to find out more.
There are also a number of resources and services available on a local and national level to those who are struggling with loneliness, including:
Campaign to End Loneliness – a website that can help you to deal with feelings of loneliness.
Wellbeing for Warwickshire – a website that provides support for loneliness and mental health
Key Ring – A community links service for those who are experiencing social isolation and/or would like one-to-one support to access and engage in the local community
NHS – information from the NHS on how to deal with loneliness
5 Ways to Wellbeing – tips and information from WCC of different ways you can work on your health and wellbeing
Living Well – WCC’s website that brings together information and services to help you look after yourself and other people
WCC health spokeswoman Coun Margaret Bell said: “We want to help residents who may be experiencing feelings of loneliness or know someone who may be lonely to find support and ways to connect in order to improve their wellbeing.
“Access to services, advice and activities is available at your fingertips or at the end of a phone.
“There are many ways you can connect with others, whether it is learning a new skill via our Adult and Community Learning Team, joining an online book club chat or checking in with people via a phone or video call.
“Connect is one of the 5 Ways to Wellbeing which are a great start for anyone who is looking to make a positive change to their physical and mental health, as well as our Living Well website, which is a great resource of information and services to help yourself and others around you.”