It’s been known for thousands of years that the use of creative expression has helped people heal in all aspects of life. The power of art also applies to addicts in recovery. Formalized art therapy can be a huge benefit to the healing process by reaching new levels of self-understanding, reflection, and revitalization. This type of therapy for addictions allows the addict to understand the sources of their substance abuse and process the pain addiction has caused them.  It lets users express themselves in new ways freely and to open up the possibilities of self-discovery.

Art Therapy Addiction Programs

Art therapy allows the individual to express their feelings, thoughts, and memories healthily.  However, when combined with other counseling and classes this therapy provides a well-rounded and long-lasting recovery.

Types of Art Therapy

When an individual enters rehab and uses art therapy, they use their creativity and imagination to create art that productively expresses themselves. The purpose of this therapy is that the person can expand their way of communicating to convey their experiences better. Some of the creative activities include:

  • Painting
  • Sculpting
  • Dancing
  • Drawing
  • Acting
  • Music
  • Poetry

Sometimes it’s hard to express how you’re feeling in words.  Therefore, art therapy is necessary for an addict in recovery because they can express those thoughts and feelings they may not be able to express with words. It is particularly useful for those who have underlying psychological issues related to their addiction. Art therapy provides ways to understand and cope with addiction.  When combined with traditional therapy, the individual can practice introspection and healthy coping skills.  At the same time, they can explore aspects of their life they may not have been able to explain in conversation.

Benefits of Art Therapy

In general, art therapy can help a person see things about themselves that they otherwise would not have understood. An art therapist helps the person process emotions and feelings that they’re struggling with to begin the healing process. Other benefits include the following:

  • Visual Communication: The first couple of weeks in rehab can be challenging and communicating about personal matters with strangers can be challenging. It gives recovering addicts a sort of second voice. Addicts can explore other ways of communicating and work through tough emotions.
  • Self-reflection: Addicts tend to have a false reality of who they are and their surroundings. However, self-expression through art provides reflecting exercises throughout the course of rehabilitation. Addicts tend to notice an improved sense of self throughout their program.
  • Personal Breakthroughs: Addicts can work through personal difficulties and experiences by visually communicating. Addicts find that they rediscover their self-worth and build trust with therapists, and make it through personal breakthroughs, which is vital to addiction recovery.
  • Emotional Healing:  Creativity exercises improve the emotional healing process. Affirmation cards, blank pieces of paper that are turned into daily positive reinforcements, are used for addicts to refer to.
  • Self Confidence: Many addicts experience a lack of self-esteem. Creative projects that can provide a sense of accomplishment are helpful. Art therapy can also lead to distress and help addicts focus on creating their future.
  • Preventing Relapse: Relapse prevention is one of the most important parts of rehabilitation and recovery. Once a person finishes treatment, there will still be triggers and situations in life that will occur. By working through temptations via art therapy, relapse can be prevented.

Learn More About Art Therapy at Behavioral Rehabilitation Services

While treatment programs do many things to help an addict get clean and sober, finding the underlying problem that caused the substance abuse is the goal of treatment. At Behavioral Rehabilitation Services, we know that not every rehabilitation facility is the same. For this reason, we have created a drug and alcohol addiction program that is specifically designed to adapt to each client’s needs and wants. We include other therapies, such as art therapy, to further help our patients.

Our facility is located in the best location that provides a very comfortable and secure place and is far away from the stress of daily life. In this way, our clients are able to relax, let go of their troubles and just focus on their sobriety and getting clean. If you or a loved one are struggling with an addiction to substances or alcohol, we encourage you to get in touch with us today to speak with one of our experienced treatment advisors.