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Combining Art Therapy and Addiction Recovery

artwork is a product of art therapy

Not a lot of people are comfortable with talking about their feelings to a complete stranger. This is particularly true about people who become alcohol or drug dependent. The problem with this is that in order for a person to fully recover from their addiction, counselors and therapists need to know the root cause that pushed the patient to become alcohol or drug dependent. One cutting edge approach for rehab patients worth consideration is one of the holistic rehabilitation programs that include art therapy and addiction treatment.

What is Art therapy?

Art therapy does not only pertain to paint and brushes. It includes any form of art including: dance, music, writing, sculpting, and acting. Rehab patients choose which art they are most comfortable participating in. Each field has its own specialized therapist who will interpret the results.

Why is art therapy helpful?

The principle behind art therapy is help the patient get in touch with his or her innermost feelings. This helps the therapist figure out which aspects of the patient’s life needs to be worked on to ensure full recovery from their addiction. Through art, the patient will be able to express the feelings that he or she has trouble putting into words. The therapist will then interpret these expressions and work with the patient on how to welcome inner healing which supports long term sobriety.

Art therapy often includes the family

This form of therapy also includes the participation of the patient’s family later on in the program. Families work together as a team in an art project which works to rebuild and strengthen their ties as a family. Strong family bonds are very important for the complete recovery of a person who was once alcohol or drug dependent. The family is usually the primary support group when their loved one is out of rehab. Also, it will also enable other family members to heal and move on from the terrible experience of having a substance abuser within the family. The healing of the entire family is vital to ensuring that the patient recovers fully from his or her addiction and that they are equipped to sustain life long sobriety. The improvement of family bonds and communications supports long term sobriety.

What to look for when choosing a treatment program

When looking for a drug rehab center that offers art therapy as a treatment option within its recovery programs, it is important that you look into the credentials of the staff leading the program. Specialized training in art therapy is important to the integrity of the program. Credentialed staff must lead and train the counselors and therapists that facilitate each class throughout your stay in rehab. It is also important that the facility you choose also offer the art that you are interested in so that you will be comfortable during the sessions. It will also give you a chance to improve existing skills. Maybe you’ll develop a new hobby or recreational pursuit. But the most important thing to ensuring a full recovery from alcohol or drug dependency is your commitment and dedication to live a sober life for yourself and the people around you. Several of the customized treatment programs offered at The Arbor include Art Therapy as part of their addiction recovery programs. Learn more about their Art Therapy program.