Newly launched self-help website for young people

Researchers at the Centre for Appearance Research (CAR) have recently made available an online self-help tool for young people with a condition or injury that affects their appearance.

YPFaceIT is an interactive web-based self-help tool for young people aged 12-17 years old. Whilst previously the website has been available only for use by healthcare professionals, for the first time it is freely available for young people to use at home with supervision from a parent/guardian.

Who designed the website?

The website has been designed by experts in appearance psychology, as well as young people, parents, and psychologists. It has been designed to help young people manage the psychosocial challenges associated with having a condition or injury that affects appearance.

What does it involve?

YP Face IT has seven weekly sessions that provide advice and support in written, audio and video formats, and includes interactive and homework activities that teach and encourage users to practice strategies such as managing staring or bullying. Each session takes about 45-60 minutes to complete and it is recommended that you complete 1 session per week.

Social skills, anxiety-management and cognitive behavioural techniques are taught to overcome social anxiety, and target negative appearance related thoughts and behaviours that reduce self-esteem. Videos feature adolescent actors with a visible difference, who play different roles in scenarios scripted and created for the programme. Young people can hear testimonies from celebrity role models with appearance-altering conditions, learn from others who have adjusted positively to the challenges of living with a visible difference and reflect on their own experiences.

Who is it suitable for?

YP Face IT is for 12-17 year olds with any appearance-affecting condition, treatment side effect or injury, who are in any way distressed by their appearance or experiencing difficulties with staring, inappropriate questioning, teasing or bullying because of their appearance. For more information on who the programme may or may not be suitable for, please click here.

If you’d like to find out more about YP Face IT, including more information about the programme and information for parents, please visit www.ypfaceit.co.uk.

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