AS A RESULT OF COVID-19 precautions, many of us are part of this secondary epidemic: people who really need a hug. Fifty-four per cent of the 40,000 people who participated in the BBC’s Touch Test, a survey conducted in 112 countries, said they didn’t get enough physical interaction: an arm around the shoulder, a sympathetic touch or a long snuggle. And that was before the pandemic set in.
By April 2020, as COVID-related lockdowns were taking effect, that number increased to 60 per cent, according to a study published in the Medical Research Archives of the European Society of Medicine. It was true regardless of whether a person lived alone or with others. Healthcare professionals have given a name to this condition that is affecting so much of society: touch starvation.
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