Library Dissertation Showcase

Investigating the effect of sleep on holistic body image

  • Year of Publication:
  • 2020

Disturbed sleep can cause dermatological changes to the face and skin. No prior studies have investigated the role that poor sleep may play in terms of facial or body appreciation. The current study aimed to investigate the potential link between poor sleep and holistic body image, comprised of facial and body appreciation, as well as cutaneous body image satisfaction. It was hypothesised that a smaller amount and poorer quality of sleep will reduce appreciation of the face and body and decrease satisfaction with cutaneous body image. 315 respondents (age range 16-85 years) completed the online questionnaire, including the Body Appreciation Scale (BAS-2), Facial Appreciation Scale (FAS), Cutaneous Body Image Scale (CBIS), and questions to ascertain the participant’s quality and quantity of sleep (measured by the average hours of sleep, hours and quality of sleep the night before the study, and Insomnia Severity Index (ISI)). The sample consisted of 252 females, 61 males, 1 bigender individual, and 1 transgender man. Hierarchal regression analyses revealed that gender and ISI scores predict facial appreciation for those below the age of 30 and body appreciation for all ages. This suggests that facial and body appreciation reduces as an effect of poor sleep. Male holistic body image appears to be more stable and resistant to the effects of poor sleep, compared to females. Overall, poor sleep quality and quantity (as measured by the ISI) affect holistic body image in terms of facial appreciation, for those below the age of 30, and body appreciation, for all ages, but not cutaneous body image satisfaction. These findings highlight the importance of sleep in relation to an individual’s appreciation of their face and body.

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