Art Therapy

Art Therapy is an effective form of therapy

Art therapy is a form of expressive therapy that uses art materials, such as paints, drawing, clay, collage and even digital media such as photography and tablet technology. Art therapy combines traditional psychotherapeutic theories and techniques with psychological, interpersonal and somatic aspects of the creative process and self-expression.

Who can benefit from Art Therapy ?

Anyone  dealing with inner emotional pain that is difficult to face can benefit from art therapy. It is  a non threatening way to release feelings and pent up emotions and may be especially usefull for children and adolescents in times of crisis or change.

Art therapy is helpful for adults with  behavioral problems such as depression, alcohol and drug abuse, domestic violence, post-traumatic stress disorder, extra-marital affairs, eating-disorders, chronic-pain, medical problems, terminal illness and family issues.

Children with behavioural problems such as ADHD, concentration problems, depression, eating disorders, bullying, low self esteem, and other dissorders find art as a way to express their feelings.

The handbook of Art therapy by Caroline Case and Tessa Dalley 1992 defines art therapy as follows:

“Art therapy involves the use of different art media(painting, drawing ,murals, sculpting as well as some forms of crafting – mosaic, beading, cement crafting, wood art, scrap booking) through which a patient can express and work through the issues and concerns that have bought them into therapy. The therapist and the client are in partnership in trying to understand the art process and the product of the session.

For many clients it’s easier to relate to the therapist through the art object , which forms a point of discussion, analysis and self-evaluation. These sessions can be individual or in a group.”

“Advocates of art psychotherapy believe that artwork is most useful when used as a tool to elicit feelings, fears and fantasies which can then be worked through in traditional talk therapy. Art therapy is a special tool that can help provide access to those hidden feelings that contain the key to our struggles.

“The theory behind art therapy is based partially on the fact that creativity and healing may come from the same place.”
(Art Therapy: How Creative Expression Can Heal – Barbara William)

At Miami Counseling Center we regularly use art therapy as a means to achieve healing.
There are other advantages to using art as therapy. One is that it gives a permanent representation of the situation, allowing the client and therapist to review what was expressed weeks or months after the session.

Creating art may also help someone relax and build a better rapport with the therapist. In more traditional counseling sessions, people are often anxious about what to say. Drawing, however, is often less threatening than verbal self-disclosure.

Yet another advantage of art therapy is that the therapist can use drawings to aid in the process of diagnosis and treatment planning. Progress in therapy can often be monitored by reviewing the changes in a client’s art work.

Contact us to find out if art therapy is the correct technique for you or your loved ones.













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