When people think of addiction treatment, they may be surprised to learn that art therapy is a part of it. What can seem like an arts and crafts session to some can lead to addiction recovery to others. Art therapy can take several forms, including painting, sculpture, crafts, and, technically, baking. It’s versatile, effective, and inspires hope and joy. That’s why Painted Desert Recovery uses art therapy in our treatment programs.
Understanding the role of art therapy in women’s recovery allows those who are struggling to know that there is hope. Anyone can recover from an addiction. When people think of addiction treatment, they think of cold, sterile white walls where clients are trapped, never to see the sun. Real addiction treatment is much different, and Painted Desert Recovery works hard to educate the public about this effective and important type of therapy.
Why Is Art Therapy So Important?
Art therapy is so important because it’s a form of communication. Many people, especially women, can struggle with communicating their thoughts. This is especially true when it comes to complicated issues like addiction and trauma. These often don’t have words that can describe how they make a person feel, especially if said trauma is difficult to verbalize. Art therapy steps in by allowing someone to express these complicated feelings tangibly and visibly. This information greatly aids treatment providers in providing accurate treatments to help their clients find peace and healing.
Another reason why art therapy is so important is because it offers an enjoyable and satisfying outlet for negative emotions and thoughts. Art is highly subjective and can take many forms. This means that there is something for everyone that they can find enjoyable and therapeutic. The act of creating something allows people to channel feelings of sadness and anger into something positive and unique. It lets people know that even though they are in pain, they are still capable of creating wonderful things. This builds confidence and self-esteem, traits that are needed to recover from addiction.
Art therapy is also fun. Some conventional forms of therapy, such as psychotherapy, can be emotionally difficult and draining. However, these are necessary parts of addiction treatment. This is why it’s important to also have therapies that can allow someone to come down from these more intensive and difficult therapies. Art therapy works well because even though it can be equally therapeutic, it can also be relaxing, enjoyable, and just plain fun.
The Role of Art Therapy for Women’s Recovery
Women especially respond well to art therapy. In many instances, women are talked down to and disrespected, especially when it comes to mental health. Women are routinely told that they should be quiet and not be a bother. This is incredibly harmful, especially for victims of trauma who were told to stay quiet. Art therapy helps by giving these women a powerful voice that cannot be silenced. There have been accounts of female artists in history who persisted despite efforts to silence them. Their works live on to inspire others to do the same.
Art therapy gives hope to women that they can create something that leaves a mark that they were there. A painting or a sculpture cannot be talked down to. It gives women a powerful voice, even if they can’t vocalize. Art therapy can help women get used to voicing their thoughts and feelings, especially when they explain the meaning of their pieces. Having an art therapy gallery viewing allows many women to gain insight into their struggles. This can also count as a form of group therapy, allowing women to bond and express themselves over their shared troubles.
Women in art therapy also find healing from creating. Art is a distinctly human trait, and it can help women realize that they are not “tainted” or bad people because they have an addiction. They learn that they are simply people, who share a heritage with every human who has ever lived. This lets them know that they deserve help, too, which can bring comfort during recovery.
Beyond Addiction Treatment
Art therapy doesn’t have to remain solely as a part of addiction treatment. It’s a valid form of expression that can assist anyone in their life, even after addiction treatment. Many women eventually turn the skills they learned in art therapy into a healthy, sober hobby. It’s an easy way to reduce stress and find satisfaction without turning to substance use. Sometimes, a person can be skilled enough to make a living off their work. Art therapy doesn’t just offer a means to get out of negative emotions. It can also open up several opportunities.
Those who have taken art therapy as part of treatment might also band together with fellow artists. Painted Desert Recovery allows our clients to build a fellowship with their peers. This allows them to look after each other as a form of support network. Having a fellowship of sober artists can help someone stay in recovery, as they have friends who understand their struggles. These friendships can last for a lifetime and can bring much joy.
Remember that anyone can recover from addiction. All it takes is for someone to reach out for help and take the first step in their recovery journey.
One of the most important therapies used as part of addiction and trauma treatment is art therapy. It gives a voice to those who have difficulties expressing themselves and offers a healthy outlet for negative emotions. Those who utilize art therapy find a healthy hobby that can help them stay in recovery. Here at Painted Desert Recovery in New Harmony, Utah, our clients have access to a variety of scientifically-backed holistic treatments to help them recover from trauma and addiction. Painted Desert Recovery is committed to helping women everywhere overcome their addictions and live a healthy, sober life. If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction, don’t wait. Call us today at (844) 540-0353.