Art Therapy and your Life
Art has been part of humanity since time immemorial. People used art to express their feeling and improve their states of mind. Even at an early age, we learn to use drawing, painting, or modeling clay to say something, to channel bad energy out of their systems, and to let others know of their emotions. But once we become adults, life and its demands take over, and we forget how important art was in our lives.
Art therapy is facilitated by an expert therapist to help us get back to that use of art and to use it not just for its inherent beauty, but also to help us improve our health and overall well-being.
Art therapy encompasses the therapeutic techniques that incorporate visual arts to improve the physical, mental, and emotional well-being of an individual. The use of art in therapy became viable when it was noted that those with mental illnesses found better communication through visual expression. It was thus refined to become a standard treatment in such and other scenarios.
Art therapy provides a vehicle through which a person can explore unpleasant feelings like anger, fear, or sadness. People normally struggle to talk about such feelings directly. Art therapy can, therefore, be applied to different individuals, whether young or old. They get to deal with issues like learning disabilities, extreme stress, family and marriage situations like domestic abuse trauma, as well as anxiety, depression, and other psychological complications. Art helps you increase your levels of serotonin. In cases of PTSD, you can have relief through the visual expression of the traumatic event that led to the condition.
Art is also beneficial for seniors, where it improves their memory and reasoning. When people draw and paint, their memories become active, more so for those with dementia and other neurological causes. As you paint and draw, you add on the number of connections in the brain that affect memory, improve moods, and make for a larger vocabulary reserve.
Art therapy is also useful in more physical complications such as cancer, where it helps you minimize stress and your reception of pain, make for a better quality of life, and give you the discipline to stick to the treatment.
Art in art therapy can be used in two different ways. There is the use of art where the process is the focus. In such a scenario, the process of making art, such as painting or modeling, will help the patient calm down and handle stress and depression much better. The focus the process needs, such as measuring the amount of clay needed in the model, choosing paint to attain the right shade, and such, as what gives the therapeutic effects.
The other way is where there is art already made, and so the final product is the focus. The patient and the therapist will take the time to analyze the meaning of the artwork. Art always has some meaning and even deeper meaning, if you are patient enough to find out. It gives one the chance to talk about something that is difficult to do so using words. When they instead make art, they are able to say what they could not. The art becomes something for the patient to anchor their thoughts and feelings, and their interpretation of the art will be a chance for them to reveal what they feel and work through those feelings and emotions.