Lifestyle Helping children to deal with looking ‘different’

Helping children to deal with looking ‘different’

A new research collaboration led by The University of Queensland’s Child Health Research Centre aims to help children with disfigurements with their confidence and self-esteem.

PhD student Caroline Gee said the study was using a web-based program originally developed to help adults who had appearance-related distress.

It has been found to make a big difference to adults in the UK and the team hope it will have similar benefits for Australian children.

“The program helps children face everyday situations with greater self-esteem and confidence by exploring common social scenarios such as going to the movies,” Ms Gee said.

“It gives tips to help them feel more comfortable about looking ‘different’ and to deal with the negative attention they sometimes get from people about their appearance.”

The program does not replace formal counselling but will supplement and support children in the gaps between treatment.

The research will initially test the acceptability and feasibility of the web-based program.

The team then hopes to conduct a randomised controlled trial, comparing the outcomes for children who have access to traditional support with those who do the web-based program.

You can read more about this study here. [Story credit: University of Queensland newsroom]

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