The Covid-19 pandemic has brought with it several problems besides illness and death.
Another problem caused by the pandemic is loneliness. In the UK, according to the Office for National Statistics, around 7.4 million people said that their wellbeing was affected through feeling lonely during the first lockdown. 
Why is it that Covid-19 has caused people to feel more lonely? And what can we do to feel less lonely in the face of the Covid-19 pandemic?
When we talk about causes of loneliness, the culprits are plain to see: lockdowns, self-isolation and a lack of human contact.
However, people are fighting back against loneliness. Technology adapts, and we have seen an explosion of useful apps and websites that promise to keep us connected even in these challenging times.
When you are in Covid-19 self-isolation, you cannot see any of your loved ones in person. You can, however, use technology to speak to people. There are a range of tools you can use to chat to people without being in the same room as them.
One potential issue with keeping in touch virtually is that we already spend a lot of time looking at screens. Working from home normally requires a computer, laptop or tablet, and a lot of people are now working from home due to coronavirus. In fact, 46.6% of people in employment in the UK are doing some work at home, according to the latest government statistics. 
One way to get round this is simply to call someone, rather than doing a video call. This gives your eyes a rest from staring at screens.
For people who are used to having a busy calendar, the lack of planned social events during Covid-19 isolation can feel quite alien. Many people benefit from having a routine, and this holds true for social engagements too.
So what can you do to replace a packed social calendar now that you can’t see anyone face-to-face?
Hopefully this should give you some ideas if you are the sort of person who likes having a busy social calendar.
Motivation is another huge problem for people who have suddenly been forced to start working from home. If you are accustomed to working in an office, working from home can seem boring and unsociable, and you may be struggling to be productive.
An online workspace can help with productivity as well as loneliness.
There are lots of helpful charities who offer online support services, as well as therapists who can be reached virtually. Just because you are in Covid-19 isolation, doesn’t mean you can’t get help.
Whilst all of the tools above will help to ease your Covid-19-induced loneliness, there is no denying that you will be spending more time alone if you are isolating.
One important thing to bear in mind to mitigate this loneliness is that routine is your friend. A routine which involves lots of exercise, activities for your brain and chatting with friends and family will help you to deal with isolation.
What sorts of thing can you include as part of daily routine?
Habits and routines help keep us sane in the face of large amounts of free time.
So there it is: our five top tops for avoiding loneliness during Covid-19 isolation. We can’t guarantee that you won’t feel lonely if you follow this advice, but at the very least, you may feel a little happier and healthier.
 Coronavirus and loneliness, Great Britain: 3 April to 3 May 2020. https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/wellbeing/bulletins/coronavirusandlonelinessgreatbritain/3aprilto3may2020
 Coronavirus and homeworking in the UK: April 2020, https://www.ons.gov.uk/employmentandlabourmarket/peopleinwork/employmentandemployeetypes/bulletins/coronavirusandhomeworkingintheuk/april2020