At Vertava Health Texas, our programs integrate several types of traditional and nontraditional tecnhiques to help patients explore and address the effects of their addiction. One of the core holistic addiction programs we offer include art activities.

What Is Art Therapy?

Art therapy is a type of expressive therapy that utilizes music, art, and other non-traditional materials to facilitate different types of healing. Art therapy was formally developed as a therapeutic practice in the mid-20th century, although it is not a proven treatment method for addiction, but rather a way to enhance the recovery process.

Types of activities that may be used within art therapy include:

  • painting
  • drawing
  • collaging
  • sculpting
  • splatter art

In rehab, these opportunities are offered in the way of guided activities and exercises meant to encourage personal reflection on the costs of addiction and the hopes patients have for recovery.

Although these art activities are often facilitated in groups, patients will generally be encouraged to participate in each project individually to more closely examine their personal situation and recovery process.

Can Art Activities Help with Addiction?

Art activities are a type of complementary treatment that can offer benefits for some patients when used in conjunction with treatments such as cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), support groups, and medication.

Research on art therapy is limited, but some potential benefits of art activities for addiction treatment may include:

  • reducing denial
  • reducing opposition to treatment
  • boosting self-esteem
  • decreasing feelings of shame
  • promoting positive change
  • increasing motivation
  • offering a non-verbal outlet for communication
  • usefulness in managing stress

The advantages of art activities for addiction recovery can also be subject to the type of activity or project assigned. Different patients may benefit from different activities depending on their specific needs.

Art assignment examples for substance use disorders:

  • creating a collage that shows the costs of addiction and the benefits of staying sober
  • keeping an art journal
  • communicating one’s thoughts or emotions through paints or sketching
  • creating art that expresses barriers patients believe they will face in recovery

For some patients, these art programs can serve as both an educational and creative experience. These art activities may also help patients better connect to their emotions and explore struggles they may be grappling with as they make progress in their treatment.

Learning Healthy Coping Skills Through Art Therapy

Unlike typical art classes that focus on improving artistic ability, our art sessions are conducted with the aim of helping to improve coping skills and encourage meaningful introspection. By participating in guided exercises and projects, patients are provided with a beneficial opportunity to express their thoughts and emotions through a creative, substance-free outlet. This can introduce patients to expressive activities that can serve them outside of a rehab program as healthy alternatives to the use of drugs or alcohol.

For people with and without a history of addiction, art can serve as a useful outlet for self-soothing and creative expression.

Many people who are recovering from addiction can feel lost about who they are without drugs or alcohol. Regardless of actual skill, art can offer a way for some people to consider their motivations in life and who they are when they are not engaging in drug or alcohol use.

Art Activities At Vertava Health Texas

At Vertava Health Texas, we offer both traditional and non-traditional treatments to help adults heal from the physical, mental, and psychological harm of addiction.

Our rehab center has two art rooms on campus, stocked with a number of materials for patients to use. Each patient is encouraged to experiment with various canvasses they feel are best able to express their thoughts, feelings, and ideas.

Common materials used by patients include:

  • cardboard
  • drawing paper
  • wooden pieces
  • journal pages
  • clay
  • rocks
  • other materials from nature

Addiction treatment at Vertava Health Texas is guided by a holistic approach to healing that seeks to treat the whole person—mind, and body. Through guided activities in groups, patients have the opportunity to discover a path towards healing that best suits their needs for a balanced and sober future.

Contact one of our admissions specialists at Vertava Health Texas today to learn more about our different addiction treatment programs.