What is Art Therapy?
Art therapy is an important and increasingly valued tool used by counselors. The people that can benefit from art therapy are endless; children with ADHD, patients with Dimentia to inmates in prison. It lets the person explore their feelings and experiences through creating their own art. This opens them up for another way to begin the healing process.
The Process of Art Therapy
The client plans and develops a piece of art that expresses what they are dealing with emotionally. For everyone its different. It can be something that is immediate and frightening, or something that happened to them before they were even able to talk. The object is come back to his or her own sense of self, understand the experience better and eventually move on from the experience. The process of making art (planning, doing, finishing and evaluating) is also confidence builder for many people.
Children benefit very well from art therapy because their verbal expression of experiences and feelings will not fully mature for years. Therefore art is one of the best ways to describe what they know and feel. Often children who are abused, neglected or have experienced trauma are more likely to need something outside of verbal comprehension to express themselves.
Requirements for the Art Therapist
An art therapist is a very specific type of therapist. They must have some knowledge of different types of visual art as well as the ability to analyze that art with the client. This means that they may have needed to study art, and they must also have a master’s degree in a psychological field and earned certifications. Additionally, they need to be credentialed by The Art Therapy Credentials Board, Inc. This ensures comprehensive and ethical practices.
There are many different ways to combat mental health disorders and each patient is different. If you or someone you know is struggling with a mental health disorder, like depression or anxiety, please contact the professional team at Lifeline Connections. You can visit Lifelineconnections.org, our Services & Locations information or call (360) 397-8246 for more information.