What can an art therapist help with?
An art therapist
guides individuals in exploring and expressing their internal world through the process of making art. Art therapists can help treat or manage stress, anxiety, depression, trauma, grief, low self-esteem, personality disorders, dementia, and physical illnesses or disabilities. Art therapists work with individuals, couples, or groups in a variety of settings.
Who is a certified art therapist? Art therapists should have a master’s degree and experience in the field; some art therapists may be board-certified, while others may not be. It’s important to take time to find a good match: Ask the therapist about their experience treating the relevant problem, what the process looks like, and the timeline for treatment. Most importantly, find someone who you, or the person you’re seeking therapy for, feel comfortable opening up to.
What settings do art therapists tend to work in? Art therapists work in a diverse array of settings, including private practice, schools, hospitals, nursing homes, homeless shelters, correctional institutions, centers for people with intellectual disabilities, programs for people with addiction, senior centers, and community centers. Art therapists work with different kinds of people who have different mental health needs.
How can you recognize a good art therapist? A good art therapist is a seasoned clinician who is skilled at helping people explore their thoughts and emotions through art-making, process the experience, and integrate the insights they’ve gained. Art therapy doesn’t require any skill or talent on the part of the patient; rather it requires an insightful therapist who can ask questions raised by art-making and initiate a discussion that turns creative expression into personal growth.