Mental Health

Expressions Beyond Words: Art as a Form Of Therapy | by Krishna Samhita | Curiousapiens | Nov, 2021

Krishna Samhita

In today’s world stress (and trauma) are a part of almost everybody’s life. At some point, most of us are sure to have encountered unpleasant experiences. They may stay buried deep within but we often feel their presence in the way we react to similar things.

We may also feel triggered and vulnerable when similar situations arise. Although we try to forget our wounds, we are released from the shackles of trauma only with complete healing. To achieve this, therapy is perhaps the most effective method.

Talking about therapy, one may wonder which one to choose. The list is vast, right from cognitive behavioral therapy to art therapy. Yes, you read it right. Art is a form of therapy recognized by mental health professionals. To those who might not have known this, few common questions are sure to arise. Keep reading to find the answers!

Credits: Tenor

In simple terms, art therapy is the use of art materials to facilitate psychological well being. One can either team it up with another form of therapy or take it alone. For people who find it easier to express themselves through non verbal means, this is a blessing.

You may wonder how art could be an effective form of therapy but studies prove that it really is. Coming to the types of art therapy, there are a variety of options. Few being painting, drawing, writing, clay modelling and sculpture. They are each beneficial in their own way depending upon individual preference. The kind of art therapy that we discuss here is painting.

As the name suggests, painting therapy is a form of art therapy where individuals portray their thoughts in the form of paintings. This promotes healing in people with either physical or emotional (or both) illnesses. This happens because it builds a sense of confidence and positivity in them.

Therapists schedule activities for their patients. The patients can then fill the canvas with their emotions. After that, a therapist interprets it to understand them. The meaning within a certain piece of art may sure look different to every individual. But, good therapists often understand their patients to a great extent.

Among a wide number of benefits painting therapy has to offer, here are a few. It can help substance/alcohol addicts get rid of the addiction. It even helps sexual abuse victims recover from their trauma.

It also acts as a rehabilitation for war soldiers. Verbal expression might seem challenging for many people especially when traumatized. Letting their emotions flow through the medium of painting might be easier. Through this therapy, one can free their mind without directly opening up to another individual. This also saves them from feeling embarrassed.

While it may be confusing to few, painting therapy and painting class have nothing to do with each other. A painting class focuses on teaching people the techniques and procedures.

The aim here is to help people improve in the art. Painting therapy on the other hand is a well crafted plan to promote one’s emotional well being. It does not need one to be an artist or even need any sort of technique. All it takes is a good therapist and an individual who is willing to trust the process.

Definitely. It is not a necessity that one must be suffering from an illness to take up art therapy. Anyone, irrespective of their age can take it up. One may do so to relax their minds while also benefiting from the therapy. For example, art therapy relieves anxiety, builds self esteem and improves concentration.

Well, despite all the proofs out there, YOU determine whether or not it works for you. Like any other kind of therapy, belief is what it is all about. Once you decide to take up art therapy, you need to trust the process. If you do, you are sure to experience all the goodness!

Credits: Tenor

So, the next time you find yourself wondering what to do to amp up your healing process or looking for a creative way to grow from within, art therapy is the thing to consider. Just make sure to visit a good, well qualified therapist and who knows, art may turn from a therapy to a passion for you.

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