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Art therapy

(12 Posts)
Helpmeplease30 Sun 16-Apr-17 21:01:08

Has anyone had art therapy as an adult? I've been offered it but am skeptical about how it might help.

NolongerAnxiousCarer Mon 17-Apr-17 11:06:38

I've not had art therapy myself. I used to know a Mcmillan Art Therapist, who worked with adults, which would indicate that Mcmillan thought it offers value. I suppose the only way to find out is to give it a go. Anyway thought I'd bump it for you.

Helpmeplease30 Mon 17-Apr-17 19:03:13

Thanks. Just seems a bit wishy washy to me. I've been turned down for everything else because I find it so difficult to talk but don't see how painting a picture first is going to make that any easier. Am sure there's more to it than that but that's what I'm trying to figure out!

onalongsabbatical Mon 17-Apr-17 19:13:50

hi Helpme, I'm a retired psychotherapist, not an art therapist but I used art in various forms when it seemed appropriate, it can be very powerful because you bypass, to some extent, the cognitive/discursive functions and can uncover stuff that you don't know is there. In a good way - don't be scared of it. Then you get to discuss whatever is brought up, usually, you're not just left painting without input and guidance. Tapping into your creative functions in itself can be enormously healing. It's really not wishy washy, but I can see why you'd think that. It's also a bit like working with dreams and the unconscious, all long established and very rich therapeutic traditions. I certainly encourage you to try it, and I think it's great that you've been offered it, actually. Very best of luck.

originalbiglymavis Mon 17-Apr-17 19:17:50

I used to work somewhere that supported an art therapy centre. I met the clients a few times and they were so enthusiastic about it and very grateful for the facilities. Some really found that it was 'their thing' and sold done works.

Try it, why not? What's the worst that can happen?

Isadora2007 Mon 17-Apr-17 19:22:34

One of my clients ended up using art in our (person-centred integrated with psychodynamic) counsellong sessions. She found it hard to talk about things and to tap into what her feelings were. She was artistic and it naturally evolved into her using her art in sessions to express things. She then talked to me about her art and I could use it as I would her words in "normal" counselling.

What have you got to lose?

Helpmeplease30 Mon 17-Apr-17 21:32:29

Thank you-that's all really helpful. Lots to think about

Badcat666 Mon 17-Apr-17 21:39:08

I did this a fair few years ago with my local mental health team as part of a variety of activities. I think it depends on what is actually wrong with you to be honest. I didn't find it super helpful for my depression and overall mental health but it was rather relaxing to just spend an hour or two every few days painting just what popped in my head provided it was quiet.

Music therapy on the other hand made me want to shove various percussion instruments up some ppls bottoms.

Helpmeplease30 Mon 17-Apr-17 23:29:59

It's for ptsd. Would have to sacrifice a lot to do it so looking for something that's actually going to help me move on rather than just be relaxing...

NolongerAnxiousCarer Tue 18-Apr-17 10:33:46

In that case I would be asking:

Is the therapist experienced working with trauma. I had a bad experience with a psychologist who was not a trauma specialist.

Have you been offered trauma specific cbt ot EMDR? These are the types of therapy specifically reccommended in the NICE guidelines as having evidence of being effective for PTSD. I don't think art therapy is mentioned. That doesn't neccesarily mean it won't help just that there is no evidence it works for PTSD which could just mean no one has studdied it. But when there are clear evidenced bases treatments it would seem odd to offer one that isn't before trying the reccommended types of therapy.

NolongerAnxiousCarer Tue 18-Apr-17 16:38:44

Sorry just noticed your comment about finding it difficult to talk so being turned down for other treatment. I had IEMT which is similar to EMDR and requires minimal talking, and if effective with pre verbal trauma. I've been told by 2 therapists that talking about the details of trauma can make PTSD worse by retraumatising you.

NolongerAnxiousCarer Tue 18-Apr-17 17:34:09

Is effective, not if effective

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