BEING LONELY MIGHT MAKE HAVING A COLD WORSE

Being lonely is no fun, and a new study suggests suffering through a cold alone is worse than with company. Rice Univeristy researchers used nose drops to deliberately infect a group of 159 volunteers with the cold virus. Each also filled out a standard psychological questionnaire aimed at assessing their feelings of social isolation, and was tracked mentally and physically for a period of five days in a hotel room. Three-quarters of participants went on to develop the cold, and those who had “less social support” had cold symptoms that were more severe compared to people who felt more socially included. This held true regardless of the size of an individual’s social network. Study co-author Angie LeRoy adds that feeling alone is a form of stress, and stress is known to exacerbate illness. (UPI