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Loneliness the theme of the FSHS Day on 19th April: Loneliness is harmful

News

Apr 6, 2018

Loneliness is one of the most common factors impairing the quality of life of people in Finland. Loneliness can make health risks up to six times more likely. As many as 10% of all university students experience loneliness. For this reason, the theme of the first ever FSHS Day is loneliness. The event will take place on 19th April 2018 on campuses around Finland.

Loneliness is a health risk

Loneliness causes mental and physical pain. It may increase health risks up to six-fold, impair resistance to illness and increase the risk of substance abuse. Considerable harm can be created inside the mind, because lonely people slowly turn against themselves. Lack of social contacts can make you think you are ill-placed, no good, unpleasant, different to others or socially incompetent. As a result, the feeling of loneliness and of not being mentally secure because you are anxious and blame yourself can increase your mental distress.

Interaction is the cure

There is currently much talk in the Finnish media about loneliness particularly among old people, but the same problem concerns people of all ages. University students also experience loneliness. Results of the University Students' Health Survey (KOTT 2016) carried out by the FSHS show that, according to various indicators, 4–10% of students are lonely. According to Niina Junttila, a professor of educational psychology who is researching loneliness at the University of Turku, a realistic estimate is 10% considering how common the experience of loneliness is in the population as a whole.

The opposite of loneliness is a sense of community, and interaction is the cure. However, nobody can create interaction on their own, it requires contact with other people. This means a community has almost unlimited possibilities to indirectly affect the experiences of loneliness of its members. University students are lucky, because they can join communities created by their class, subject associations, fraternities, departments and faculties. Communality requires a community. One of the FSHS’s important tasks from the start has been to improve community health. This work improves the health of student communities and thus every individual student.

Loneliness forms the theme of the FSHS Day

The first national FSHS Day will take place on campuses around Finland on 19th April. The theme of the day is loneliness. We want to increase awareness of the harmfulness of loneliness and offer ideas and ways to increase the sense of community among students.

The FSHS Day on 19th April 2018 around Finland, the program will be released shortly!