Staying healthy become the number one priority for a lot of us in 2020 as COVID-19 changed the way we live, eat and work. With so many new obstacles we haven’t had to overcome before, the one silver lining we can take out of the pandemic is how it’s highlighted preventative health and wellness. With restrictions in place our general health started to decline as doctor’s visits or consultations were limited to emergencies only. While this didn’t have an immediate impact on our health as the year progressed the neglected added up and started to cause problems that many health professionals found troubling.
As these changes started, so did how we consciously think about our general health and wellbeing. With the majority of the population in isolation and facing financial stress, the health and wellness trends that have emerged are accounting for a more holistic view and not purely focused on physical health. This article will go through some of the emerging trends.
- Mental Wellness
Lack of human interaction during lockdowns, increased the focus on mental health. With so many people in isolation, the need for human connection and communication became apparent. While medical professionals have known about this for a long time and so has a large portion of the population. But the pandemic has increased mental health awareness, putting it at the forefront of public discussion. Many studies have shown the isolation, financial hardship and general increase in public fear have all taken their toll on mental health. More and more people have come forward looking to improve their mental health as these factors have caused a strain on their mental health.
- Oral Health
During lockdowns we were restricted in what health professionals we could visit. Dental visits dropped dramatically because of this and the sector had to adapt. Out of this came an increase in home services delivered to improve oral health. While not all dental services can be provided remotely, many can. Zoom consultations and remote clear aligners services provided some relief for those looking to maintain or improve their oral health. Zoom consultations have been used to determine the seriousness of oral issues, which can save patients spreading the COVID-19 virus and help determine the need for emergency surgery.
- Increased Work-Life Balance
Working from home was a major change in 2020. Social distancing rules meant a lot of offices closed down and remote working from home became the new normal. For many of us this adjustment was hard, but after given some time to adapt it looks like a trend that is here to stay. While working from home may not sound ideal for office manager that’s worried about productive. However, studies have shown that working from home has actually had the opposite effect. By improving employee’s work/life balance, working from home has actually increased productivity. While businesses have seen the positive side, so have the employees. Working from home has increased family time, but also reduced travel time giving them more time for leisure and wellness.
- Cooking and Eating Healthy
Following on from the above points, all the extra time spent at home that was forced onto us lead to increased time in the kitchen cooking health but delicious food. While many of us picked up new hobbies to occupy the time, healthy cooking was the most popular by far. With gyms closed and outdoor time limited our diet became a big focus and with all the extra time, healthy cooking took off. Celebrity chefs are around the globe started posting healthy recipes for us to follow at home. What started as a social media trend to keep us occupied while in isolation has ended increased awareness in what we cook and eat. On top of this, for a long time we couldn’t go out and eat takeaway or fast food, or at least our exposure to it was limited. Even working from home helped this trend as it forced a lot of us to make our own lunches instead of getting takeaway meals at work.
While the impact of the COVID-19 virus has been devastating there have been some positives to come out of the pandemic. Perhaps for the first time ever, health and wellness has been at the forefront of public discussion. Increased awareness on a global scale has taken health trends from niche short lived fashions to serious considerations for the general population. While we can 2020 was tough for a lot of people, the changing health and wellness consciousness can only be benefit us as we leave the pandemic behind as with the rollout of the vaccine.