Younger Scots are more likely to feel lonely than the UK average, a report has found.
The findings have caused concern as loneliness among young people has been shown to increase the likelihood of poor physical and mental health as well as reducing the chance of future employment opportunities.
A survey by the Dame Kelly Holmes Trust of more than 1000 young people aged from 14-25 found 84 per cent of Scots said they had felt lonely recently, compared to a UK average of 72 per cent.
The research also found young people not currently in employment, education or training were almost 20 per cent more likely to feel lonely, while young women are more likely to suffer than young men.
“It’s always sad around this time of year to hear about the growing problem of loneliness among the elderly, however today’s announcement shows it’s also a major issue for young people within modern society,” said Emma Atkins, CEO of the trust.
“We work with thousands of young people facing disadvantage every year in Scotland and a large amount of them suffer from isolation and loneliness for a diverse range of reasons. It’s a spiral that’s very difficult to escape from, especially as society becomes increasingly disconnected and we witness a decline in large aspects of community.
“Perhaps the most revealing aspect of the study was the disparity between loneliness and attitudes such as confidence and resilience. It’s essential that support is available to help young people in Scotland realise these attitudes, which are crucial to developing emotional wellbeing and the vital social networks needed to live a positive life.”