About this Research Topic
Although loneliness is regularly measured as a universal mental state across social groups, time points, nations and cultures, the exact meaning of loneliness, its triggers, and its effects on mental health vary significantly. Whilst this may be widely acknowledged, it is rarely made explicit as a guiding approach. The restrictions imposed on people’s lives due to COVID-19 has come as perhaps an unwelcomed reminder of the importance of the context in which loneliness and other forms of mental suffering take place. It is through deeper understanding of how the sense of loneliness arises in a particular context and through a particular mechanism that we can better understand its impact on mental health.
It is our hope that papers submitted and published in this Research Topic will shed light on this important topic. Your paper may or may not relate to the current pandemic. Neither are there any restrictions on the age groups of the subject of study. We particularly welcome studies that address loneliness, social isolation and mental health in nations, cultures, or social groups that so far have not attracted sufficient attention from loneliness researchers. All types of study (qualitative or quantitative, cross-sectional or longitudinal, conceptual or practical, etc.) are welcome as long as they are rigorously designed and thoughtfully argued given the resources at the disposal of the researcher. Given the focus on mental health, we would not consider papers that address the relationship between loneliness and physical health.
For this Research Topic we welcome papers that contribute to our understanding of the contexts of loneliness and the implications of loneliness for mental health or mental wellbeing in general. We welcome submission of papers on, but not limited to, the following topics:
• The meaning and measurement of loneliness in a special context or to a special social group;
• The effect of loneliness on a special type of mental disorder (anxiety, depression, PTSD, etc.);
• How COVID-19 and lockdowns make people lonelier in a particular context;
• Loneliness among patients of a particular mental disorder;
• How a particular group of people interpret, react to, or cope with loneliness;
• Communities, social isolation, and loneliness;
• Cross-national or cultural comparisons on loneliness and mental health;
• Context-dependent interventions on loneliness and mental disorders.
Keywords: anxiety, co-morbidity, covid-19, depression, loneliness, sadness, self-esteem, self-isolation, social capital, social isolation, social network, social withdrawal, stress
Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.