A guest post from a place I used to do art therapy at in California:  Corona Regional Medical Center  I’m glad to know they still have art therapy going on at their center.  Miss all of you!!!  Read post sent by Philip Reed

Ten ways art therapy can work for you.

Art therapy is an interesting topic because there is such a huge misconception of both what it is and who it can help. You don’t need to be an artist, or even close to it, and nor do you have to be a child who has suffered a major trauma as shown so often on TV.

Art therapy is for everyone, and offers a wide variety of positive benefits that are focused to each person’s individual needs or issues. Below are the top ten reasons that you shouldn’t discount art therapy as a tool in maintaining your mental, physical and behavioral health.

  1. Art therapy allows people to give a visual representation of their feelings which can help you face or work past these feelings.
  2. In a supportive environment, art therapy can help to ground people to their reality, putting the present moment front and center.
  3. It can help alleviate the stress that some people feel when trying to talk about their feelings while still allowing them to express what they are going through or dealing with.
  4. Art therapy can be tailored for any person, using a vast array of mediums including clay, paint, sketching, stenciling, stamping, coloring, etc. making it extremely versatile.
  5. Creative expression, even for someone who is not experiencing a personal difficulty, can be very rewarding, inspiring, and cleansing.
  6. There is no “right or wrong” with art therapy. You draw, paint, sculpt, or design whatever it is that you feel.
  7. Widely recognized for its positive benefits, art therapy is currently used in many fields including; mental health, rehabilitation, medical or education situations and as a means of communication in everyday life.
  8. When used in a rehabilitative setting, art therapy can greatly improve hand-eye coordination, body awareness, balance, and body control.
  9. When used in children with behavioral health issues, art therapy can be a gentle, non-invasive and drug free method of treatment.
  10. Art therapy can easily be integrated into every day life, and in fact, is practiced without conscious intent by people every single day.

Given its flexibility, versatility, and accessibility, art therapy is an amazing tool that can be utilized by people in all walks of life and can truly be the starting point to get an individual where they want to be within their mental, physical or emotional health.

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