Art Therapy

Art Therapy

Art therapy is a powerful expressive therapy. It can help address deep-rooted issues that contribute to addiction and destructive behaviors. The process of creating art can relieve stress, build self-esteem, promote self-regulation and self-awareness, and provide a healthy coping skill.

In art therapy, clients are guided by a specially trained art therapist to use various media for creative self-expression. They explore issues, stressors and emotions that have played a role in their addiction. The creative process can be as healing as the reflection that sometimes takes place afterwards.

Our clients have the opportunity to participate in both individual and group art therapy sessions. They are also encouraged to use the art studio during personal time. To learn more about art therapy, call 888-879-1289.

How Art Therapy Helps Heal Addiction

Often those struggling with substance abuse have lost touch with themselves physically, mentally and emotionally. By creating art and exploring its meaning, clients can reconnect with parts of themselves that have been buried by addiction. They can give “a voice” to issues they may have difficulty verbalizing. Many clients find creating and illustrating emotions instead of just talking about them to be a powerful therapeutic outlet.

Art therapy can also provide valuable opportunities for clients to be present in the moment, concentrating on specific parts (shape, color, feel, movement) of the art-creation process. Creating art can promote relaxation, emotional release and concentration — valuable addiction recovery skills. In group sessions, art therapy can help clients learn how to connect with others honestly and respectfully.

Art Therapy Approaches

There are two main approaches in art therapy. These are:

  • Art as Therapy – In this approach, the focus is on the art creation process, which can be healing in and of itself. While creating art, clients may experience emotional catharsis and explore emotions, issues or experiences. Techniques include molding clay, painting, drawing and creating mandalas. Clients are encouraged to observe what arises for them through this process and discuss it with the art therapist if desired.
  • Art Psychotherapy – Art psychotherapy is a more guided art therapy approach that typically begins with a prompt around a certain theme or issue. Clients create pieces based on what comes up for them around a designated topic. This might involve experiences or feelings they have trouble verbalizing. Clients discuss their piece, its symbolism and the process of creating it with the art therapist and other group members, if in a group therapy setting.

Art Therapy Tools

Our art therapist is trained to help clients express themselves through their choice of various themes and materials. Clients are encouraged to explore the spiritual, emotional and psychological issues that arise.

Art materials used in the creative process include items such as:

  • Paints, including watercolors or acrylics
  • Canvases
  • Murals (outdoor and indoor)
  • Clay
  • Pottery wheel
  • Markers, crayons, colored pencils and pastels
  • Materials for making collages
  • Mandalas

At the end of treatment, clients can choose to take a portfolio of their work home with them, which often ends up representing their progression in addiction recovery.

Our Art Studio – A Creative Setting

Our art studio provides a safe, accepting space where clients can feel vulnerable and work on art, no matter what their previous experience with art has been. Large, windowed doors open to hard wood floors, a long, welcoming table, comfortable chairs and stools, and cabinets and shelves filled with art supplies. An accent wall is warmly decorated with art therapy pieces donated by former clients at Clarity Way drug rehab center.

This airy space is stocked with a range of materials needed to explore art and feelings in whatever way resonates with a client. Clients are encouraged to use the art studio during group and individual sessions and during their personal time.

Learn more about art therapy and other approaches at Clarity Way drug and alcohol rehab. Please call us at 888-879-1289.

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Clarity Way

Clarity Way
544 Iron Ridge Road
Hanover, PA 17331


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