Art therapy as a treatment


Today we are going to talk about a very interesting topic that you may haven´t discovered yet. As you could read in the previous blog posts, art can be used in many areas, but perhaps one of the most important utilities  for the society is the use of art as a therapy. I will try to define this concept by answering a few basic questions.

When is  the beginning  of „Art therapy“ considered?

This new specialization was coined in 1942 by Adrian Hill. He suffered from tuberculosis, and during his stay in the hospital, he started to draw paintings that he could see from the bed. In a short time period he noticed that this method was acting as a potential stimulus for counteracting the mental and physical atrophy caused by the long convalescence.

Over the years, this kind of therapy has achieved a professional recognition, using  it in lots of patients‘ cases and also being part of several university studies.

Which kind of artistic therapies exist and how do they work?

Basically, almost all kind of arts have a recognized medical procedure, in form of  „music therapy“, „dance therapy“, „theater therapy“ and „plastic art therapy“, which are the most usual.

In practice, an art therapy session could be done individually or in groups, and commonly with the help of a professional therapist who controls that the patients follow the right path, and assess the improvement, too.

How could this be useful?

The art therapies are a good tool for the self-development, improving the personal well-being. By practicing them, people can create a better procedure to communicate their feelings and emotions in an easier way than the current communication channels. Due to this, art therapy can be a good recovery method for people with psychic diseases (such as autism, dementia or learning problems )and also some degenerative diseases ( like sclerosis), allowing to improve the self-esteem, the self-confidence and sometimes their skills.

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On the other hand, it is very useful for people with physic  diseases too, such as atrophy or any other physic injury, allowing to improve their abilities. But even art therapy could be recommended for people with less important problems like stress and tension, or basically as a good method for self-discovery.

Do you need to be talented?

Of course you don’t need to. The main goal of this method is to improve your well-being, not to create an art masterpiece. The therapist should create a carelessness atmosphere, so  that the person who is being treated feels free and comfortable for expressing his thoughts.

Perhaps it is not the cure for the diseases but it could be very successful combined with other kinds of medical treatments. What do you think? Will art therapy replace other traditional treatments? Tell us your opinion in the comments!


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