by: Duffy & Duffy
With so many people working from home, constant video calls have prompted many of us to become hyper-critical of our appearances since the start of the pandemic. A recent study in the Facial Plastic Surgery & Aesthetic Medicine journal attributes a surge in patients seeking cosmetic surgery to an overexposure to Zoom. In fact, it’s been referred to as the “Zoom boom”—the rise in demand for cosmetic surgery procedures due to people wanting to change their appearance after seeing how they look on-screen.
It’s easy to compare ourselves to the grid of faces behind cameras spread across our laptop screen, especially when there’s no hiding behind Instagram or Snapchat filters to smooth our skin or alter facial features. Compared to real-life interactions, we’re also not used to seeing our own faces or emotions in conversation, which may also result in increased self-scrutiny, facial dysmorphia, and lack of self-confidence. Not to mention that the placement and angle of phone cameras can also cause distortion of facial features, like a misshapen or crooked nose or eyes that are further apart than reality.
Duffy & Duffy, a New York-based medical malpractice law firm, commissioned a study to analyze internet searches by state since the start of the pandemic. The firm found a drastic increase of 54% in Floridians searching for the most popular cosmetic procedures. Searches for “dermal fillers,” for example, increased by a whopping 140% from May 2020 to May 2021.
It was also discovered that searches for “Botox” in Florida increased by 22%. The American Society of Plastic Surgeons reveals that Botox was the most sought injectable treatment in 2020, with over 4.4 million procedures performed throughout the year. With many aiming towards a post-pandemic comeback in terms of improved appearance, this may also have something to do with people wanting to change their look after months of sweatpants-wearing during lockdown.
Interestingly, Kansas was the only state that didn’t display an increase in these search terms, but instead, a decrease of 6% in online searches relating to cosmetic procedures.
Before any kind of cosmetic surgery, Duffy & Duffy recommend finding out if your potential surgeon is certified by, and a member of, the American Board of Plastic Surgery. The ABPS is one of the 24 organizations that make up the American Board of Medical Specialties. These boards work together to establish common standards for doctors to achieve and maintain this board certification.