Loving Your Reflection: Confidence, and Mental Health

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While we have made some great strides in mental health awareness over the last few years, we still have a long way to go as a society before we get to where we need to be. For many people, mental health is a taboo topic, something that can’t be properly spoken about as there is a lot of shame involved with it. There is often an unnecessary stigma keeping people silent, leaving them feeling as if there is something wrong with them and therefore afraid to speak out. For those who are able to get past that stigma, and speak openly about their struggles, they often find themselves facing the additional challenge of misinformation. After decades of silence, many people do not fully understand mental illness enough to speak of it, even when they wish to.

Unfortunately, another consequence of the last year of pandemic induced isolation is that many people’s mental health is at a low which they might not know how to deal with. Many of the usual coping methods that they rely on (some probably without realizing it), such as friends, outings and even standard grooming practices, have been taken away and it’s difficult to find alternatives that are still considered safe. It’s not just the obvious aspects of the pandemic, such as stress, anxiety and isolation, that are causing these increased struggles. For many, the constant reminders of how they appear thanks to endless Zoom calls and too much time to reflect on their own reflection has had a huge impact on how they see themselves – and yes, that is all part of their mental health.

Another misconception which our society has continued after years of misinformation and poor representation is that the only reason someone might want to change or improve their appearance, particularly at medical esthetic clinics like Orangeville’s A Wrinkle In Time, is vanity and vanity alone. Yet, that simply isn’t true. Ignoring the genuine conditions that A Wrinkle In Time’s procedures help with for a minute (I’ll speak about them soon), it’s remarkable the difference that a Botox treatment, or Hyaluronic Acid (HA) filler to correct a nose bump can do for a person’s confidence – and consequently, their mental health and overall wellbeing. Yes, being able to love yourself inspite of all of your flaws, and being 100% comfortable in your own skin is a beautiful thing that we should all be thankful for – but it is also a very difficult thing to do, particularly when you are struggling with other mental health and confidence issues. These little improvements, can go a long way to assuring someone who is suffering from such things will have an easier life, which is just what we should be wishing for

Although, very often it can be even more than that. These services that some might write-off as “frou-frou” indulgences can be so much more. Owner and founder of A Wrinkle In Time, Tammy Brady, has been a registered nurse for 22 years, and brings that medical experience with her to the clinic, performing procedures for people which are not just about beautification, but help ease actual conditions.

Procedures such as light emitting diode (LED) treatments which have been popularized as purely for aesthetics can actually be used to treat acne, reduce rashes, and help in minor muscle and joint pain, as well as in wound care treatment. Hair restoration can even be done with platelet rich plasma injections (PRP); Botox – the most cliché “beautification” procedure – has been known to help with temporomandibular joint pain and ease stress headaches. For women struggling with stress and urgency incontinence, the O-Shot procedure can go a long way to bringing them both confidence and relief from their struggles. Not to mention IV Vitamin Therapy which is a treatment method that can be used to ease a long list of ailments including migraines, chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, allergy and sinus and respiratory infections, including Covid-19.

The fact is that this industry has been changing for quite some time, without people realizing it. Whether it’s mental health, or physical health, there’s a lot more involved with these procedures and treatments than meets the eye.

Really, it all comes back to one simple truth: There is a lot going on in the world, as well as in people’s personal lives. If this past year has taught us anything, it’s that we need to be kinder, to ourselves and to others. Don’t be so quick to judge people when you don’t know or understand what they’re going through, and also don’t be afraid to ask for help for yourself, regardless of what your difficulty may be. Whether you’re hoping to find someone to talk to, ease the pain of a chronic condition, or just making sure that you genuinely like what you see in the mirror, you deserve that smile on your face – and we all want to do is make sure that this is just what happens!

Written by Jillian Kent for LivingSpaces & Lifestyles Magazine, Summer 2021 issue