Art therapy integrates psychotherapeutic techniques with the creative process to improve mental health and a patient’s overall well-being. According to the American Art Therapy Association, art therapy is as follows:
A mental health profession that uses the creative process of art making to improve and enhance the physical, mental and emotional well-being of individuals of all ages. It is based on the belief that the creative process involved in artistic self-expression helps people to resolve conflicts and problems, develop interpersonal skills, manage behavior, reduce stress, increase self-esteem and self-awareness and achieve insight.
People who have experienced some sort of trauma often find recovery help through art therapy. In other words, if you struggle with the effects of trauma and traditional therapy does not help, then seek this treatment method to begin recovery.
Art Therapy for Trauma
Art therapy can be used for anyone who suffers from the effects of trauma. Children who suffer from the loss of a parent and adults recovering from the effects of an attack can all heal with art therapy, because it lets them express themselves creatively to promote healing. Art therapy is often used in combination with other psychotherapies to treat the following disorders:
- Anxiety, depression and other mental/emotional problems
- Mental illness
- Substance abuse and other addictions
- Family and relationship issues
- Abuse and domestic violence
- Social/emotional difficulties related to disability or illness
- Personal trauma, posttraumatic stress disorder and loss
- Physical, cognitive and neurological problems
- Psychosocial difficulties related to medical illness
Art therapists can work alone or as part of a team, depending on the individual patient and the type of treatment she needs. This means that art therapy can adapt if the patient needs it to do so.
Art Therapy Methods
Art therapists employ a variety of art forms to help their patients recover from trauma. Painting, sculpting, drawing, collage and other types of expression are all used to treat patients, especially because of how the therapy works. Art therapy sessions focus on expressing inner thoughts through the works. This means that an art therapist teaches different techniques to help patients develop their artistic skills, but the purpose is for the therapist to examine the art and find unique feelings behind the artwork.
Creative Help for Trauma
Experiencing trauma can result in a variety of mental illness symptoms. Using art therapy to address trauma is one way people who are hurting can find help. If you or a loved one endured trauma and needs professional treatment, call our toll-free, 24 hour helpline right now. Our admissions coordinators are ready to answer your questions and to help you find a treatment program that will best meet your needs.