How Have Appearances Changed During Lockdown?
Staying At Home Affects Physical and Mental Wellbeing
Whether you embraced fitness or piled on the pounds, the chances are that you may look a little different post-lockdown?
Lockdown has significantly changed the way we live, work and study. However, one aspect of lockdown which has impacted both our physical and mental wellbeing is the notion of body image. As we emerge from lockdown, but are still very much in the midst of the pandemic, how have appearances changed in such a short time?
Dental practices closed their doors in mid-March but are now open again, albeit on a reduced treatment schedule. Unfortunately, there has also been a growing lack of at-home dental hygiene amongst Brits with millions forgetting to brush their teeth twice a day as their routines are so out of whack. Without getting up and out of the house each morning, it may be easy to stick to your hygiene routine, but that doesn’t mean that it’s any less important. A professional dentist in Essex explains that it takes just two minutes to brush your teeth thoroughly and this simple action can help to prevent plaque from forming, and ultimately safeguard you from gum disease. If you want to maintain that perfect smile, then it’s essential that you keep brushing.
Two thirds of Brits reveal that they’ve gained weight during the lockdown, with a third having put on more than half a stone. Inactivity, binge-eating and excess alcohol consumption have all contributed to the nation getting larger. Perhaps surprisingly, a study compiled by Slimfast discovered that young people and women are the categories of people who are piling on the most weight with the biggest rise in those aged between 18 and 24 years old. Some claim that they’re less bothered about their physical appearance when there are fewer opportunities to see people. Others have just given into the temptation of a large stock of food in the house.
In stark contrast to the weight gain of the population, there is also a growing interest in keeping fitter. When the government prescribed an hour’s exercise as one of the few opportunities to actually leave the house during spring, this motivated many Brits to get fit for the first time in years. Parents joined in with live ‘PE with Joe Wicks’ sessions on weekday mornings, and there have also been almost a million downloads of Public Health England’s Couch to 5k app, which represents a 92% increase in comparison to 2019. The app was created for people who have had zero or little experience of running and advises users to go for three runs a week.
Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and other social media platforms provided a fantastic way for us all to stay connected during a time where we didn’t see anyone but delivery drivers. But social media has long been blamed for forcing unrealistic body images on people and lockdown has exacerbated this trend. With fat shaming memes and the posting of pre and post-lockdown shapes, self-acceptance has been challenged when faced with a myriad of perfect bodies and faces.
Whether you’re worried about your hair, eyebrows or your nails looking imperfect, remember that there’s more to life than worrying about your appearance. Whatever changes you make post-lockdown should be for you and your health and not to appease anyone else’s opinion of what you should look like.