Background: Older people are a major patient group seeking medical care in Sweden. Several of the elderly are living alone and the main reason for living alone is when the spouse passes away. Loneliness is a factor that can affect quality of life, health and wellbeing. Loneliness is an individual experience, loneliness can be self-chosen but involuntary loneliness can lead to lifelong suffering and feelings of loneliness. Aim: The aim of the study was to highlight the factors affecting loneliness among elderly people within municipal care living in Sweden. Method: The method used is a literature review and the article results were analysed with inspiration of the content analysis. Results: The result is divided into four categories: Social networking, activity and assistance needs, communication difficulties and gender differences. The feeling of loneliness may be affected by living alone or living in special accommodations. People with different ethnic origin and people with incipient dementia development are two groups of patients who experience loneliness. There are gender differences in the experience of loneliness. The result shows that men do not experience loneliness to the same extent as women do. Discussion: The experience of loneliness can generate poor health. As a nurse, it is important to have knowledge of the factors affecting the feeling of loneliness in order to prevent poor health.
- Medicin och hälsovetenskap (3)