Art Therapy is a form of care that utilizes visual arts to enhance an active and satisfying lifestyle. This type of therapy started in the early 1970s. It’s since become one of the most innovative and effective senior care and community service programs available. The unique therapy helps to relax senior citizens by engaging their senses and instilling a sense of well-being.
Types of Art
There are a variety of ways to receive this kind of therapy, including painting, drawing, photography, and music. Some seniors prefer to focus on areas such as communication, health, or history. Other seniors choose to receive counseling, exercise, massage, or even voice/voice therapy. Depending upon the senior’s needs, the art therapist will design a program to best meet their specific needs. This can include learning how to cook, learn how to play the guitar or sing, and much more!
Who Does It?
This kind of therapy works in conjunction with many senior care professionals such as therapists, doctors, and nurses. The art therapist and his/her staff are highly trained professionals who understand the importance of working with senior citizens, and how art can provide healing, relaxation, stimulation, and hope. Because it’s common in an in-home environment, art therapy for seniors provides an intimate setting in which to work. The results are amazing for senior citizens who often find themselves at a loss about how to lead an active and fulfilling life once they retire.
Does it Work?
This form of therapy is not a new concept but recent advances in technology and the expertise of the therapists who practice it has made this treatment more accessible to senior citizens than ever before. As the senior citizen ages, he/she often moves into a state of deep depression. Therapy attempts to bring out the feeling of happiness and joy in these senior citizens by encouraging a feeling of well-being and self-worth.
Art can be beneficial because it allows the senior to take in the experience of creating art as an activity that is enjoyable, rather than a task that requires concentration or focus. Therapy for seniors offers opportunities to participate in group activities, such as painting or drawing sessions. This helps to reinforce the positive aspects of the feelings about what the painting or drawing signifies.