It’s the time of year when the issue of loneliness is often brought into sharp focus.
Public awareness of the growing number of people who feel isolated and alone is rising, but for those with multiple sclerosis (MS), perhaps it’s not growing quickly enough.
New MS Society research released on Monday to coincide with the International Day of Persons with Disabilities, claims that three in five people with MS feel lonely because of their condition – 12 times the figure in the general population (5%). A total of 58% say they feel isolated because of MS, and more than 40% say they have felt both.
Ed Holloway, MS Society director of services and support, said: “Anybody can be lonely, but we know from our research that loneliness is an issue which disproportionately affects people living with MS.
“The MS Society offers a whole host of support, including a free helpline, information and grants. Our local groups are based all around the UK, and provide friendship, social events and support to those affected by the condition.
“To think 60% of people with MS are lonely is shocking and we hope to encourage people to get in touch with us and join the fantastic community that’s out there.”