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My Mind Check is not able to diagnose an eating disorder. But it can tell us if you may be experiencing some difficulties with your body image or eating at the time of your check-in.

Things to know about body image  

  • Body image is how you perceive, think about and feel about your body.  
  • It includes how you view your appearance, size, shape and other physical attributes.  
  • Body image development begins in early childhood and changes throughout your adolescent years, right through to when you are anadult.  
  • Males and females of all ages and body types can have negative feelings about their bodies.  
  • Sometimes, negative feelings may lead to you feeling less confident to participate in your usual routines and activities, and you may experience increased stress and sadness.  
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Things to know about eating difficulties  

  • Eating difficulties can affect your physical health, growth and development, emotional wellbeing, and overall quality of life.  
  • When you were younger, you might have gone through phases of picky eating where you refused certain foods or had strong preferences.  
  • As you get older, you can become susceptible to media messaging and social pressure about food and body image. This can affect your behaviours and attitudes to eating.  
  • Some young people use food to cope with their big emotions, or their appetite may be reduced because of stress or low mood. 

You might be reading this because you are worried about your body image or your eating. We recommend letting your caregiver know about your concerns as soon as possible. It’s important to talk to a healthcare professional, such as your doctor or paediatrician, who can help you to better understand any underlying causes and connect you with support if needed.  

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Fact sheets about body image

Body image

Information for young people who are concerned about their body image
12-25 years

Understanding body image

Information on what is body image, what can influence our body image, how this can affect us, and how we can improve our body image and get support
12-25 years

Fact sheets about eating difficulties

Understanding disordered eating and eating disorders

Information about eating difficulties and knowing when to get help
12-25 years

Eating disorders

Information on signs, symptoms and types of eating disorders and who can help
12-25 years

Eating disorders – Information, treatment and support services

Understanding the types of eating difficulties and how to get help
11-25 years

Programs for body image and eating difficulties

It’s important to talk to a supportive and trusted adult if you are struggling with body image or eating difficulties. This could be your caregiver, a family member, a teacher, a school counsellor, a doctor (known as a GP) or any other adult that you trust. By sharing your concerns, they can help you access the support that you need.

Talking to your GP can be very helpful, as they can guide you towards support options that are right for you. If you don’t have a GP, you can find one using the Services Finders section below.

Your trusted adult may benefit from attending one of the programs listed below to learn more about how to support you.

Butterfly Foundation Parent Seminars

Seminars for parents and caregivers providing them with information about how to support their child’s body confidence

Referral required
No

Costs
Yes

Ages 12+ Years

Butterfly Foundation Carer Program

A program for caregivers to help a young person overcome an eating disorder

Referral required
No

Costs
Free

All ages

General services for body image and eating difficulties

If you are seeking support on behalf of a student who reports concerns relating to body image or eating difficulties but doesn’t need specialised services, use these service finders to explore what general services may be appropriate.

Head to Health

Provides resources to help your student understand and manage what they’re feeling and connect them to mental health support

Headspace

Find a headspace centre for your student. Headspace centres are located throughout Australia and are staffed with people who are trained and ready to help

Headspace Regional Phone Counselling Service

Provides support to students living in areas with less accessibility to mental health services by providing digital mental health support via credentialled clinicians during school hours

Find a GP (General Practitioner)

Find a GP suitable for your student’s needs, with options to search for bulk billing practices, opening hours, access needs, and location

Find a Psychologist

Find a psychologist suitable for your student’s needs, with options to search by issue and location. Your student may wish to see a GP prior to making an appointment with a psychologist, to gain a referral or Mental Health Care Plan (MHCP)

Specialised services for body image and eating difficulties

If you are seeking support on behalf of a student for concerns relating to body image or eating difficulties use these service finders to explore what services may be appropriate.

Butterfly National Helpline

Provides free and confidential support for students with eating/body image concerns. This helpline also provides support to teachers who are caring for a student with eating/body image concerns

The Butterfly Foundation Referral Search Database

Help a student find professional support for eating or body image concerns, depending on their needs and preferences

Connect·ed Searchable Directory

Help a student to find and connect with ANZAED Credentialed Eating Disorder Clinicians from around Australia

InsideOut Insitute Treatment Services Database

Search for a private practitioner, community clinic or program, day program, in hospital treatment, support group or clinical supervisor on behalf of a student

The National Eating Disorders Collaboration Service Locator

Find information about eating disorder-specific clinical services for a student