Loneliness is a sad state. The American Medical Association has identified loneliness as a public health issue. It was a lot worse for many people during the pandemic.

According to the World Health Organization, periods of isolation and quarantine have triggered a 25% spike in anxiety and depression. They say the health risks tied to loneliness are even worse than obesity, physical inactivity, excessive alcohol consumption, or smoking up to 15 cigarettes a day.

As human beings, we thrive best in a social support network, whether it is made up of family, friends, a loving partner colleagues, or any combination.

With that in mind, Aging In Place researched a number of factors to determine the loneliest states in America. The factors considered in the research included the number of people searching for friendship apps and the number of single-person households.

So, how did Texas turn out?

First, let's run down the Top Five Loneliest States:

1) Maine: Over 31% of households are made up of single people and 14% of the population is divorced, That makes Maine the Loneliest State in the US.

2) Florida: Because of all the widowed retirees, the state is pretty lonely. In fact, Florida is The  #2 Most Lonely.

3) Ohio: With more than 31% of single-person households and over three million searches for dating apps in 2021 alone, Ohio is #3 on the list of lonely states.  If you're single, it might be a great place to mingle.

4) New Mexico: Maybe that's why they legalized recreational marijuana use, although no one wants to smoke alone.

5) Vermont: No other state has more searches for singles dating sites. That combined with high numbers of single-person households means Vermont might be a great place to go to find love.

Photo by Gahan N Rao on Unsplash
Photo by Gahan N Rao on Unsplash
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Now the Good News is Texas is #47.  About the only thing lonely in Texas is that lone star on our state flag. Only California, Hawaii, Alaska, and Utah are less lonely than Texas.  Only 25% of households are single-person households. Only 11% of people are divorced. Texas also scores low on the index for online searches for singles websites.

That doesn't mean there aren't lonely people here in Texas.

Fortunately, there are helpful resources statewide.  In San Angelo, West Texas Counseling and Guidance has a website to help you find resources.  You can find the link here to get started on the road to feeling better if you are suffering from anxiety due to loneliness.

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West Texas Counseling and Guidance

Texans are generally friendly and welcoming people. If you know someone who lives alone, check in on them.  Take a minute to brighten their day.  You might find it also makes you feel more connected in a meaningful way.

If you need help, reach out. Help is there. Whether we are one of the loneliest states or not, one lonely suffering person in our community is too many.

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