One way to treat behavioral health issues is through art therapy. It involves a patient expressing his or herself through art under the guidance of an art therapist who is trained in helping people resolve mental health problems through art and picking up on visual clues to gain insights into the patient’s psyche.
Art therapy achieves a number of things for a patient. It helps to build up self-esteem, as well as to manage behavior and feelings. It increases awareness of oneself and others and increases cognitive development. Creating art is also a great stress reliever.
The medium of art used can vary. Most think of art therapy as focusing on the visual arts, such as painting, drawing, sculpting, or photography. But the performing arts, such as acting, singing, and dancing can also be used for a therapeutic purpose.
An art therapist generally has training in both psychology and art, at the very least at the Master’s Degree level, along with a number of certifications. Such a person is able to bring the two disciplines together to gain insights into the patient and to guide his or her healing process through artistic expression.
The beauty of art is that one does not have to have serious mental health issues or be particularly talented for it to have a benefit.Many people, some famous in high stress occupations, have used creating art as a form of relaxation. In a sense the goal is not so much the end product, but the process of creating it. The act of creation helps many people function much more effectively in their overall lives.
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