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Home chevron_right Health and wellbeing chevron_right Loneliness


We all feel lonely at times, it's a natural human emotion. As people, we seek human contact, and feeling lonely is a signal that we need more of it. We might also feel that the quantity or quality of our relationships with the people around us are not as good as we'd like them to be.

It might surprise you to know that it's more likely to be young people aged 16 to 24 who feel lonely now, not older people, as we often think. Recent research has shown that older people are more likely to develop ways of coping with loneliness as their life circumstances change.

The effects of long-term loneliness on your health can be as bad as smoking 15 cigarettes a day. If you've been feeling lonely for a long time, it's always worth speaking to your GP to make sure you're getting the right support.

We've listed lots of useful information below to help if you're feeling lonely.


What if I need help quickly?


If you're in emotional distress and need urgent support, please contact The Samaritans. They offer a safe space for anyone to talk and are available 24 hours a day. Call 116 123 or email jo@samaritans.org.

Shout is a 24/7 free text service for anyone struggling to cope and in need of urgent help. Text SHOUT to 85258.

Local support in Middlesbrough


Andy's Man Club is a safe space for men to talk openly about their feelings and problems, and get peer-to-peer support.

Boro Man Can posts regular videos featuring real local men talking about their problems and how they cope, sharing their inspiration and hope with you.

Inward Bound is a community organisation based in Middlesbrough which offers emotional support, mindfulness, and meditation. Courses are currently running online.

Food and friendship with Together Middlesbrough and Cleveland lets you form new friendships and helps to build stronger communities.

Ladies Circle is a modern, vibrant online club for women age 18+, which offers the opportunity to connect with other women, have a great time, and give something back.

Support for young people


Support for older people


Useful links and tips to manage loneliness