Mental health awareness is all around us at the moment, and body image is intrinsically linked with mental health. High profile individuals, most noteably senior royals such as Princes William and Harry, are making it their business to raise awareness, make mental health issues a less taboo issue, and help people realize that going to the doctors for depression and anxiety should be as normal as going for a chest infection.
Social media and mental health
Social media, celebrities and constant visual marketing impacts us in ways we can’t really understand, but it all plays into our subconscious, causing us to feel that we should look, feel, behave and succeed in ways that we may not realise.
Constant imagery of ‘beautiful’ and ‘perfect’ women and men are air brushed, tweaked and polished, making many people feel insecure, inferior, and lacking – we are either too fat, too old, not the right shape, we have thigh dimples, podgy bellies, we aren’t successful enough, or whatever other failing society has told us that we have.
Subsequently I see many people who believe that a visit to me could change everything for them.
Let me tell you a secret. It won’t.
I can’t make you look 20 years younger. I can’t turn you into a confident super model. I can’t help you get the job of your dreams. I can’t make you look like Sophia Lauren, or Natalie Portman. (In truth, in some cases I can’t even promise to make your skin condition completely go away !)
What will I do for you?
So what can I do? I can, with the tools available to me, help with a problem that is causing you difficulty. I can help restore your self confidence, to boost your self esteem by lavishing the time you need to tackle problems that are causing you distress, and help you relax and enjoy your treatment times.
What I WON’T do is play on your fears and insecurities. I wont prescribe treatments that aren’t necessary – I will listen to you about what problems you want to solve, and try very hard not to add to your list of woes by pointing something out that up until that point hadn’t bothered you! I won’t promise you something I can’t achieve, and in most cases I will try to convince you that your big problem is perhaps not quite as big as you think it is. (I hear myself saying ‘You do realize that no-one else will see this as badly as you do?’ quite a lot!).
If for one second I think you are suffering from body dysmorphia (the condition where you believe the problem to be far worse than it is, or even non-existent, but you believe it is terrible and is affecting how you live your life), I will try to encourage you to seek help for that. I am now making the right connections so I have great therapists to refer to for this kind of help. I will usually refuse to treat the condition until help has been sought because it would be unethical to take money when the problem is more of body dysmorphia than a skin treatment itself.
Treatments and coffee! (Or tea!)
My ethos is to be kind, and honest about treatment options while making sure people aren’t living in constant distress. Some skin conditions, such as acne or rosacea, or excessive facial hair for example can be very distressing and debilitating. I will always do my best for you, even if that’s just having a coffee and a chat with you, not just by taking your money and providing treatments! So book a chat, and we will go from there!
See you in clinic!