Body image is how we think and feel about ourselves physically. Sometimes, we worry about how we look or what our friends think about our body.
If you're struggling with body image, here’s some advice that can help you.
Body image is not just about our weight, it can also be things like:
- comparing how you look with friends or people you follow on social media
- struggling to love and accept your body
- feeling as though your body shape is not represented in the media
- hiding your body because you feel ashamed by it
- struggling to find clothes for your body, particularly if you have a physical disability
- feeling misunderstood about your body when people make assumptions about things like why you might need a wheelchair
- feeling like you are not attractive enough
- birthmarks, surgery scars or acne affecting how you feel about how you look
- feeling as though your body does not match your gender. For information on this, have a look at our page on gender and mental health
Top tips if you’re struggling with body image
- Be kind to yourself and focus on the things about yourself that you love.
- Don’t compare yourself to images of other people online, these are often digitally altered to appear perfect.
- Try not to let your social media affect how you feel about your body. Follow people who make you feel good and talk about body confidence.
- Spend time with people who make you feel good about yourself.
- Think about what advice you would give a friend if they told you they were struggling with the way they look and remember that advice whenever you start having negative thoughts.
- Talk to someone you trust. It could be your parents or wider family members, like older cousins, aunts or uncles. Outside home, it could be a teacher, a neighbour, a close family friend or someone from a club you attend.
If you feel unable to cope, or particularly worried about one part of your body, talk to your GP about how you’re feeling. They can listen, tell you about local services and support groups, or they may suggest specific treatment for the way you’re feelin
For information on body image please visit the Young Minds webpage.