The topic of wellness and self-growth epitomizes my approach to therapy no matter the reason that you reach out to me for support. I work from an empowering approach to help you take care of yourself from the inside out. Our goal of helping you achieve a sense of balance and calm in your life will ultimately also help you relieve stress, manage feelings of depression and anxiety, and lead you forward toward positive self-growth. Because of the powerful and undeniable connection between mind and body, these in turn will also help with health and prevention of conditions caused by and exacerbated by stress. Healthy eating, good sleep, regular physical activity, support, and gratitude are the building blocks to wellness.  Self-growth results in happiness, confidence, and personal success in all that you do.


Long-Term & Healthy Weight Loss

I want to take a moment to discuss long-term weight loss with you. In today’s fast paced world, ‘long-term’ and ‘weight loss’ rarely go hand in hand. The diet industry is booming, yet weight issues and obesity rates are higher than ever. Related conditions such as diabetes and high blood pressure are also sky-rocketing at alarming rates.

Although most of us understand the concept of eating healthy foods and the need to exercise, people often turn to radical changes in short term diet. This leads to immediate weight loss only to be shortly followed by the inevitable weight gain, leaving you even more frustrated and less motivated than when you started.

I will teach you what I have been teaching my clients successfully for years, that the missing component to successful long term weight loss and maintenance is the psychological component. I will give you the tools to take care of yourself first.

To help you create a balanced, happier, healthier life. Eating patterns are not isolated to physical cravings and hunger. Our eating patterns and eating problems are dictated by our emotions, our ability to deal with stress and by how we feel about ourselves.

Remember, weight loss and maintenance is a journey, a lifestyle- and success is not about achieving an arbitrary number on a scale. Rather we will go on a journey together to achieve your long term health, happiness, calm, balance and high self-esteem that will allow you to live a fuller & much improved life.



Like many other mental health disorders, anxiety and depression can create a range of challenges for students. The associated symptoms that children or adolescents experience with these disorders can exacerbate their difficulties and impact their ability to meet academic demands. It is not unusual for an anxious child, especially one who is eager to please or a rule follower, to hide their anxieties and struggles. These children may hold themselves together all day, but come home and release their true feelings. Therefore their teachers may not always be aware of or understand your child’s struggles.

Depending on the level of severity, a student may benefit from support and accommodations within the school setting. It is not unusual for anxiety and/or depression to be diagnosed alongside learning disabilities, ADHD or ASD, especially for older children.  Therefore, Dr. Cherwony provides a thorough evaluation to consider the whole child and how to set them up to demonstrate their potential. It is important to understand whether anxiety is primary and the cause resulting in a child having school struggles, or secondary and is a result of some learning challenges.  Dr. Cherwony will help identify the core underlying issues for your child so that the appropriate intervention is selected to best suit the needs of your child.  Unidentified mental health concerns often lead to bigger problems. Therefore, it is essential to advocate for your child so that he or she can receive the appropriate support and intervention both at home and school.

Please see Psychoeducational Testing


Disorder of Written Expression or Dysgraphia is a childhood learning disorder that involves poor writing skills.  A child can have dysgraphia along with ADHD, Developmental Coordination Disorder (Weak fine-motor skills and visual-motor integration and planning), Expressive Language Disorder,  Dyslexia, and/or an autism spectrum disorder.  Aside from the physical act of writing, the writing process includes the ability to plan, organize, revise, express oneself using words, sentences, correct punctuation, and communication skills. A thorough evaluation will therefore not only identify Dysgraphia, but any underlying or comorbid disorders. In this way, the most appropriate and holistic intervention can be determined.

Symptoms include:

  • Errors in grammar and punctuation
  • Poor handwriting and writing slowly
  • Mixing up letters
  • Poor spelling
  • Poorly organized writing
  • Leaving out words or letters in sentences on paper
  • Difficulties getting thoughts onto paper
  • Has to say words aloud when writing


A Math Learning Disability or Dyscalculia affects an individual’s ability to understand numbers and learn math facts, and is associated with weakness in fundamental number representation and processing. Ranging in level of severity from mild to severe, some individuals display language-based math disability and some have spatially based math difficulties.  Those with spatially based math difficulties commonly have struggles in their elementary years with basic math facts and procedures. These individuals have struggles in reading and writing too. Their math struggles are related to those processes impacted by language, for example, verbal memory, sequential processing, and at times by attention deficits, including distractibility and impulsivity. The latter group tend to have struggles related to interpreting graphs/maps, visual representations, and estimation skills. Regardless, early identification of math difficulties helps intervene appropriately, but also prevents children from thinking that no matter how hard they try, they still can’t achieve. Providing the appropriate support and tools to children with a math disability, goes a far way towards maintaining their confidence and work ethic.

Signs and Symptoms                                                                                                

  • Shows difficulty understanding concepts of place value, quantity, number lines, positive and negative value, carrying and borrowing
  • Has difficulty understanding and doing word problems
  • Has difficulty sequencing information or events
  • Exhibits difficulty using steps involved in math operations
  • Shows difficulty understanding fractions
  • Is challenged making change and handling money
  • Displays difficulty recognizing patterns when adding, subtracting, multiplying, or dividing
  • Has difficulty putting language to math processes
  • Has difficulty understanding concepts related to time, such as days, weeks, months, seasons, quarters, etc.
  • Exhibits difficulty organizing problems on the page, keeping numbers lined up, following through on long division problems


As a parent of three children, Dr. Cherwony understands what it is like to be concerned and worry about your child. At an early age, there is a wide range of what is considered normal development.  However, there are also definite blocks of time when most children will meet a milestone.  A developmental delay is when your child does not reach his/her developmental milestones within the expected time-frame. These delays can impact your child’s functioning in terms of his or her physical, cognitive, speech or language, fine and gross motor skills, social and emotional as well as overall behavior. In the event that the delay is ongoing, early intervention is key in order to help your child reach his or her full potential.

A Developmental Evaluation is conducted when there are concerns about a child’s development and there is a need to either diagnose or rule out Autism, Asperger’s, Childhood Disintegrative Disorder and other Pervasive Developmental Delays.

Since each child is unique and can present with different symptoms, it’s important to have a comprehensive evaluation in order to determine if a diagnosis does in fact exist. Dr. Cherwony works with a multidisciplinary team of professionals to help identify the child’s strengths, assess overall functioning and needs of the individual in order to provide accurate diagnosis, if applicable. The diagnosis does not change your child. Rather, a diagnosis opens doors so that the appropriate treatment recommendations can be made. A thorough evaluation ensures that the child receives the appropriate intervention.

Studies show that children who are diagnosed early and participate in the appropriate intervention programs have better outcomes. A comprehensive developmental evaluation consists of an in-depth interview with parents, review of previous records, standardized assessments, including gold standard tests such as the ADOS-2, school observation or consultation, evaluation for speech and language, and occupational therapy.  Once the assessment is complete with your child, a feedback session with parents including a written report detailing diagnostic impressions and recommendations is provided.

Dr. Cherwony takes on a neurodiverse approach. This is a viewpoint that autistic, as well as individuals with ADHD, are wired differently from neurotypical people, rather than as having weaknesses.  It is an approach focused on acceptance of an individual’s variation in the human brain regarding sociability, learning, attention, mood and other mental functions. The incidence of diagnosed autism in the United States is now 1 in 54 children, with boys being 4 times more likely than girls, according to the latest report of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Autistic adults and professionals who have embraced a neurodiverse approach believe that individuals who have a natural variation in their brain development do not need to be cured. Rather they need help and accommodations to allow them to excel and to reveal their unique strengths.


Many insurance companies and bariatric surgeons require all patients to undergo a bariatric evaluation prior to weight loss surgery. The patient must receive psychological clearance that states that he or she is prepared for surgery and will be able to follow through with the aftercare protocol once the surgery is over. There is so much valuable information that we gain from these evaluations. Dr. Cherwony has specialized in bariatric evaluations and counseling with bariatric patients for over 20 years. She has relationships with several bariatric practices.

The evaluation takes approximately 1.5 hours. Once the evaluation is complete, Dr. Cherwony will provide a report to your surgeon’s office.  She will also offer you feedback on how you can be successful for long term weight loss following the surgery. You will leave the evaluation with recommendations so that you can begin your healthy journey for the last time. Dr. Cherwony is then available to you for support of the lifestyle changes once your bariatric surgery is over.

Please call for an appointment at Dr. Cherwony’s Boca Raton or Palm Beach Gardens office.


Dr. Cherwony is recognized by all school districts in Florida to provide an annual assessment of your homeschooled child. Dr. Cherwony will provide you peace of mind knowing that your child is keeping up with grade level expectations and provide guidance on any areas where your child may need additional help.


Knowledge is the key to unlocking potential and opening doors to success. To get started down the road to a more rewarding life, you need to be able to identify strengths as well as any specific challenges that may stand in your way. Psychological evaluations give you answers to these questions and serve as your map to be your best.

Psychoeducational testing is often referred to as psychological assessment. The purpose of this evaluation is to gain a comprehensive understanding about the way a person learns and to determine an individual’s current level of academic, behavioral and emotional functioning. These tests are most typically conducted when an individual is struggling in school or is having difficulty with test taking. A Psychoeducational Evaluation is often conducted in order to determine whether a specific learning disability or other disorder (e.g., ADHD, Dyslexia, Dyscalculia, Dysgraphia) may be impacting significantly on a student’s academic performance. For instance, the presence of a learning disability, attention deficit disorder, or emotional disorder can result in a great deal of academic frustration and inability for a student to perform at his/her level of innate potential. For example, it has been estimated that 15 to 20% of students have a learning disability. A learning disability is diagnosed when assessment results reveal a significant gap between a student’s scores on achievement tests (in reading, mathematics, and/or written language) and his/her educational expectancy range (based upon age, grade, educational background and instruction, and intelligence). In addition to determining whether a student has a specific disability that impacts learning, plainly stated, Psychoeducational evaluations provides a good indication of how a student learns best (i.e., his/her learning style) as well as individual strengths and weaknesses. This information is then used as a guide for making recommendations about which teaching, remediation, and compensatory strategies will be most effective for a student to succeed. Once the teacher, parent, and student are empowered with this knowledge, they can make adjustments in order to maximize the student’s learning potential.

Dr. Cherwony takes great pride in her comprehensive and thorough evaluation process. A battery of carefully selected tests includes standard measures used for most children, as well as additional tests as needed for the child’s individual needs. In this way, Dr. Cherwony has information to compare children against the thousands she has seen and has become very sensitive to what is within normal development. The additional tests help to gain further insight into specific areas of concern so that the appropriate treatment plan can be formulated. For example, when testing for a learning disability in reading, aside from knowing that a child has dyslexia, Dr. Cherwony wants to know what other contributing factors underlie their difficulties. Many children have either attentional or language processing deficits. Once we know this information, we will also know what specific interventions will help get the best outcome for your child to be successful. Along with school struggles, it is common that many children also suffer from anxiety or other emotional component. It is therefore imperative that a comprehensive assessment is completed for a child when warranted. For these reasons, Dr. Cherwony frequently helps identify difficulties in children who were either misdiagnosed or who had otherwise slipped through the cracks. 

Psychoeducational Testing may  include:

  • IQ and other Cognitive Tests (Visual, Auditory, Information processing, etc.)
  • Language Processing
  • Attention
  • Achievement Tests (reading, math and written expression)
  • Emotional Testing (For example, are symptoms of depression or anxiety impacting on a child’s learning)
  • Personality Testing 
  • Socia, Emotional, and Behavioral Functioning

Learn More About

I believe in a multi-disciplinary team approach and have spent years establishing relationships with other professionals and doctors in
the community who I highly respect and refer to as needed. In the event that I determine that you or your child will benefit from either an additional or alternative intervention, I will refer you to that professional I deem as best for your specific needs. I believe in treating all of my clients the same way I would want someone else to treat my own children and other family members.


Dr. Cherwony meets with children, teens, and adults in her Boca Raton and North Palm Beach offices to conduct evaluations.




Bariatric Psychological Evaluations are conducted prior to undergoing bariatric surgery. Many insurance companies want to see that the individual is a suitable candidate for compliance following their surgery. Bariatric practices that have met the standards for Center of Excellence expect that all of their patients will undergo a thorough Bariatric Evaluation before being considered for surgery.

I have worked with bariatric patients for many years and have seen firsthand their success and their struggles associated with the surgery. I have seen the unbelievable life changes and improved quality of life.

Therefore I am a huge advocate for the surgery and my goal is to help you to go through the surgery because you deserve a second chance at life. However, I want to see you go through this life changing event with the best results possible. I conduct a thorough evaluation with my main goal being to help prepare you for long term success. I use the evaluation as a means to educate you and to discuss any concerns that you may have. I want to see you lose the weight and keep it off for good. Following the evaluation, I will provide you feedback and recommendations for long-term success. We will discuss the steps that you can take to greatly increase your odds for long-term success. I also offer pre and post surgical support.

” by Heidi R. Cherwony, Psy. D.

Founder, mindandbodydoctor.com


”She is skinny, I like her dress, her flowing hair and her fabulous make-up. If only I looked like. ” How many of you are constantly comparing yourselves to other people. By comparing ourselves to others, we are in fact setting ourselves up to feel insecure, have low self-esteem and a poor body image. We are setting ourselves up to feel as a failure and that we are not good enough. We have so much pressure from the media and society to look like a supermodel that we forget about what we do have to offer and in fact how amazing our bodies truly are. Do you wish to continue your life in pursuit of that perfect body or would you rather spend your time and energy enjoying what you have accomplished with friends and family?

In moving toward a sense of wellness, let’s talk about the tools to work on your mind. Let us move you toward understanding, appreciating and accepting your body so that you can finally learn to love who you are and your body shape. These are the three steps toward a happier you.

1. Awareness: It is important to understand how miraculous your body actually is. Biologically and physically, our bodies are masterpieces that perform at a high level every moment.  We also need to appreciate that we consume food to provide fuel for our bodies so that we can function in many different capacities. Think about your body and it’s limitations before you decided to have surgery and the improvements that you have made since then. Learn to practice mindfulness. In other words, we need to begin paying attention and listening to our body’s cues of hunger, fullness, fatigue and pain. This will help us to differentiate between our emotional and physical hunger.

2. Acceptance: We can move toward acceptance of our present situation and what is, rather than dwelling or longing for what is not. To facilitate this, we can begin to think about our positive intrinsic qualities and rehearsing positive statements about ourselves such as, I am a caring person. Be kind to yourself and pay attention to the words you choose in speaking to yourself. Stop verbally abusing yourself! Also, in the same way that we expect normal weight fluctuations with each day or month, we should also realize that we have our own unique genetics and body type.

3. Assistance: Realize that you deserve encouragement when life gets tough and you feel stressed.  It’s okay to reach out to friends, family or professionals for support. Let those close to you know who you are by expressing your needs and wants.

By Heidi R. Cherwony, Psy.D.