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       Art therapy is a mental health profession in which clients, facilitated by the art therapist, use art media, the creative process, and the resulting artwork to explore their feelings, reconcile emotional conflicts, foster self-awareness, manage behavior and addictions, develop social skills, improve reality orientation, reduce anxiety, and increase self-esteem. A goal in art therapy is to improve or restore a client’s functioning and his or her sense of personal well-being. Art therapy practice requires knowledge of visual art (drawing, painting, sculpture, and other art forms) and the creative process, as well as of human development, psychological, and counseling theories and techniques. 

During individual and/or group sessions art therapists elicit their clients’ inherent capacity for art making to enhance their physical, mental, and emotional well-being. Research supports the use of art therapy within a professional relationship for the therapeutic benefits gained through artistic self- expression and reflection for individuals who experience illness, trauma, and mental health problems and those seeking personal growth. 

Art therapy is an effective treatment for people experiencing developmental, medical, educational, and social or psychological impairment. Individuals who benefit from art therapy include those who have survived trauma resulting from combat, abuse, and natural disaster; persons with adverse physical health conditions such as cancer, traumatic brain injury, and other health disability; and persons with autism, dementia, depression, and other disorders. Art therapy helps people resolve conflicts, improve interpersonal skills, manage problematic behaviors, reduce negative stress, and achieve personal insight. Art therapy also provides an opportunity to enjoy the life-affirming pleasures of art making. Source: American Art Therapy Association.


Benefits of Art Therapy 


  • Encourage self expresion of thoughts and feelings, fears, anxieties, and other emotions that may be difficult to verbalize

  • Gain positive self- esteem and postive body image 

  • Cope better with challenges in life such chronic illness, divorce

  • Process traumatic experiences including chronic illness, hospitalization

  • Increasing self awareness

  • Build confidence and make choices, gain control of the situation

  • Communicate and interact more effectively with others

  • Lessen stress and gaining coping skills when dealing with emotional and physical pain

  • Improve quality of life

  • Find comfort, freedom, and hope 

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