Many people have been surprised about the fact of how art can be therapeutic for the soul and serve a versatile function when it comes to helping people of all ages.
For decades, mental health practitioners have been using art as a way to help patients from all age groups and types, such as prisoners, war veterans, and people suffering from mental disorders. According to the Michigan State University Extension, it was found that overall human health can encompass many aspects and good health outcomes can involve integrated mental, physical, emotional, and even environmental approaches. Art has been one of those approaches that have proven to bring exceptional benefits to our physical and mental health.
Several problems can be treated through art therapy, such as anxiety, depression, stress, PTSD, substance dependency, and many more. It aims to manage behaviors, reduce stress, increase self-esteem and process our feelings more efficiently.
Self-discovery is also an important benefit that has been seen to come out of healing through art. Many patients have spoken about how they have found a different side to themselves once they started indulging in creating their own artwork pieces. Moreover, it has also helped them recognize and come to terms with their feelings that have been lurking away in their subconsciousness.
Emotional release is another factor that has proven to be one of the best benefits of art therapy. Art provides people with an outlet where they are free to express and let go of their inner turmoil and fears. This can be extremely helpful in certain situations as there are many complex emotions such as anger and sadness that cannot be easily conveyed through words. And when you are unable to express how you feel, it builds up negative emotions and heightened emotions to that desire emotional release.
Furthermore, some psychological issues hinder our ability to be happy; emotional trauma can lead to depressive episodes that are beyond our control. Artworks as an ideal countermeasure that helps fight anxiety, trauma, and depression on levels that normal medication cannot.
Many artists struggle with depression but manage to use art as a form of expression that allows them to effectively deal with their mental health issues and create a space where they are allowed to freely express their complex emotions.
For example, let us consider a prime example of Bolli Blas, a highly acclaimed British contemporary artist and painter. Despite having a passion for art, she has spoken how she has sometimes been overwhelmed by the other challenges that come with being a professional; organizing exhibitions, communicating with collectors and galleries, dealing with customs, and many more of these responsibilities have been extremely taxing on her mental health. On top of that, she is also expected to come up with a unique art idea and bring it to life.
Bolli had been fighting depression for a long time, but she has talked about how sitting down and working on her art has always helped her get through the tough times. And after visiting some of the poor cities of Central America, Asia, and Africa, she is determined to hold her future exhibitions in these places where having more art exposure can help citizens can find their own therapeutic ways to fight their mental struggles through art.