What is Creative Arts Therapy?

The terms creative arts therapy or expressive arts therapy are often used interchangeably and refer to any approaches to therapy which involve the use of the arts (art, music, dance/movement, drama, psychodrama, poetry, or play) for therapeutic intervention (Brooke, 2006; Miraglia & Brooke, 2015). Creative arts therapy sessions may incorporate the use of a wide range of creative arts materials (art supplies, musical instruments, puppets, masks, costumes) to support the facilitation of therapeutic interventions.

Q: Do I have to be an artist in order to do creative arts therapy?

A: No previous experience in the arts is required to engage in and benefit from the creative arts therapy process.

Q: What sets creative arts therapy aside from other, more traditional forms of therapy?

A: Creative arts therapy provides individuals with the unique opportunity to externalize difficult aspects of their experience into creative arts materials outside of themselves. This process can reduce the likelihood of an individual becoming overwhelmed by the content that emerges, as well as enable the individual to see their challenges from new perspectives.

Q: Is creative arts therapy just for children?

A: Absolutely not: creative arts therapy is an effective treatment modality for individuals of any age, with significant literature supporting its use with children, youth, adults, older adults, and the elderly.