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In art therapy, a person uses their creativity and imagination to make art that expresses their self in a healthy and productive way. The goal of art therapy is for the person to expand their forms of communication in order to better convey their experiences and emotions.
At Samarpan we use a multitude of approached to enable clients to express themselves in different formats.
SAMSHA’s Substance Abuse Treatment guide for group therapy describes art therapy as a type of expressive group therapy that can help people express their thoughts and feelings that they may not be able to say with words. This therapy is especially helpful for people who have underlying psychological issues related to their addiction, such as a history of abuse. Clients at Samarpan will undertake group and individual Art Therapy as part of their treatment process.
According to the American Art Therapy Association (arttherapy.org, 2017), art therapy can be used “to improve cognitive and sensory-motor functions, foster self-esteem and self-awareness, cultivate emotional resilience, promote insight, enhance social skills, reduce and resolve conflicts and distress, and advance societal and ecological change.”
When utilized in conjunction with a drug and alcohol treatment program, artistic exploration gives clients the opportunity to express themselves through visual and symbolic mediums and communicate in ways that enhance traditional talk therapy. Creative expression has become a cornerstone of modern rehabilitation programs, giving clients a multi-dimensional platform for exploring the more obvious as well as previously uncharted facets of their emotions, thoughts, and feelings. Using both traditional and unconventional mediums, clients can communicate in a holistic way that enhances their wellbeing by reducing stress and depression, bolstering self-esteem, and providing a creative outlet.
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