Though many people have unknowingly practiced some type of expressive arts therapy in their lives, most have never heard of expressive therapy or expressive arts therapy. In brief, the expressive arts are, as the name implies, art forms that allow the artist or creator to express himself and his emotions and feelings. This could be accomplished through painting or drawing a picture, dancing, writing, making music, or anything else in between.
While people are free to practice the expressive arts just because they want to, there are some individuals who can benefit greatly from expressive arts therapy. With expressive arts therapy, a wide variety of expressive art forms are often used to bring about and promote healing and happiness in the patient. Expressive therapy is particularly popular among those who struggle with substance abuse and addiction. During the healing process and after, this therapy form can help patients to get in touch with their deepest emotions and can also provide an outlet for dealing with emotional pain and discomfort during and after the healing process has taken place.
There is some debate over just how effective expressive therapy is at helping to treat addiction and substance abuse problems and at promoting sober living after treatment. While most people agree that expressive therapy works best when combined with other, more traditional therapy forms, there are some excellent benefits commonly found when expressive therapy is used as opposed to or in addition to more traditional therapeutic forms. Some of the benefits include:
If someone you love is currently in recovery from a substance abuse problem or addiction, you may be wondering whether or not expressive therapy could benefit him or her after treatment is complete and, if so, how. The answer is more than likely “yes.” People who seek some type of treatment, especially therapeutic treatment, after attending a rehabilitation facility have a much higher chance of long-term success than those who resume their basic lifestyles after treatment. Expressive therapy is a particularly good choice because most patients find it fun and enjoyable; because they don’t look at it as a chore, they are more likely to keep attending expressive therapy sessions and thus more likely to reach their sober living goals.
Expressive therapy is also a good choice for recovered addicts and substance abusers since it gives them a real outlet for the conflicting emotions, pain and anger they now feel – feelings that were once hidden or muffled by the drugs and alcohol. It also teaches the addict or substance abuser to be more aware of, attentive to, and comfortable with his or her own body, also increasing the chances for long-term success.
If there is someone in your life who you think could benefit from expressive therapy, call now to speak to an admissions coordinator about your options in sober living and therapeutic support. There are expressive therapy programs geared specifically toward dance, theatre, fine arts and other areas of the arts, as well as programs that utilize all different types of arts. Talking with a friendly, knowledgeable representative can help you to nail down the right therapy programs for your loved one today.