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The Modern Behavioural Epidemic of Loneliness

Weston Education Centre (WEC), Denmark Hill Campus, London

22 Jan brain

With increasing societal stresses, loneliness and social isolation have become silent killers.

Loneliness has adverse impact on well-being, health, and even longevity. Recent research has sought to examine its biological underpinnings. While loneliness is prevalent in the general population, it is more common with serious mental illnesses such as schizophrenia.

A new finding from Professor Dilip Jeste MD's investigations is a significant inverse correlation between levels of loneliness and wisdom. Wisdom is a complex personality trait that includes several specific components: empathy and compassion, emotional regulation, ability to self-reflect, acceptance of diverse perspectives, social decision making, and spirituality.

Components of wisdom are potentially modifiable with behavioural interventions. This presentation will discuss possible interventions to promote wisdom and reduce loneliness both at individual and societal levels.

Professor Jeste's talk will be followed by a research symposium from Old Age Psychiatry to uncover research on established mind and body interventions, such as new research on cognition to assess facets related to wellbeing and care of neurocognitive disorders. We are also delighted to be joined by Richard Siow, Director of Ageing Research at King's (ARK), who are collaboratively hosting this event alongside the NIHR Maudsley BRC. 

Food, tea and coffee will be provided from 3pm and guests will have the opportunity to network with peers and speakers. 

About Professor Dilip Jeste MD 

Prof Jeste a geriatric neuropsychiatrist who specialises in successful ageing, explains how loneliness has become an epidemic, the risk factors, helpful interventions, and how we can harness wisdom for compassion, self regulation, and more. 

Prof Dilip Jeste is the Senior Associate Dean for Healthy Aging and Senior Care, Estelle and Edgar Levi Memorial Chair in Aging, Director of the Sam and Rose Stein Institute for Research on Aging, Distinguished Professor of Psychiatry and Neurosciences at University of California San Diego, and Co-Director of the UC San Diego-IBM Center on Artificial Intelligence for Healthy Living.

Old Age Psychiatry

Members of the Department of Old Age Psychiatry work together to develop new treatments and to find ways of getting the best for our patients from treatments that are already available. The Department of Old Age Psychiatry is led by Professor Dag Aarsland and enables biological and clinical research that is believed to have important impact upon understanding of dementia and other conditions that affect older people that affect older people and lead to the development of better treatments. Research is conducted in close collaboration with the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience - IoPPN’s Department of Neuroscience, MRC Centre for Neurodegeneration and Biomedical Research Centre for Mental Health.

Ageing Research at King's

Ageing Research at King's (ARK) is a cross-faculty multidisciplinary consortium of investigators which brings together scholarship and research in ageing in several complementary areas. ARK represents King’s world-class excellence for research on the biology of ageing, from the basic mechanisms in biogerontology to clinical translation and the social impact of ageing. The primary purpose of ARK is to enhance multidisciplinary research collaborations within King’s to better understand the mechanisms of ageing and improving health-span.


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