Many rehabilitation programs offer alternative holistic therapies, including art and music therapy. In recent years, many facilities have used arts and crafts in combination with a wide range of therapy styles and treatments. According to the Journal of Addictions Nursing, “36.8% of treatment programs offered art therapy and 14.7% of programs offered music therapy.” Art can improve your overall health and emotional well-being. Newport Beach Recovery Center offers art and music therapy services to provide clients with additional support.

Why Do So Many Rehabilitation Programs Incorporate Arts and Crafts?

Art and music therapy have become more common in rehabilitation facilities in the last few decades. Creative self-expression is an excellent tool for mental healing. Many recovery programs use a variety of mediums and activities, including:

  • Art or music therapy
  • Dancing and other creative forms of movement
  • Creative writing
  • Hands-on crafting

You can benefit from both participating in and observing creative activities. According to the American Journal of Public Health, “[T]here is evidence that engagement with artistic activities, either as an observer of the creative efforts of others or as an initiator of one’s own creative efforts, can enhance one’s moods, emotions, and other psychological states.” Everyone can find some form of creativity that engages them on an emotional level. You can use that connection to increase self-awareness and positivity.

What Treatments Utilize Arts and Creativity?

Many alternative therapies use creative activities to encourage self-expression, including:

  • Lyric or creative writing
  • Playing musical instruments
  • Dancing
  • Painting or drawing
  • Digital art

Arts and crafts can include guided discussions or leave the client alone to create without specific instructions. Collages, dream boards, sculpting, and other hands-on crafts can provide clients with a healthy outlet for strong emotions. Psychotherapy can incorporate journaling or other creative activities. However, in most cases, complementary therapies take place separately. Some programs also use arts and crafts as a form of group therapy to encourage positive social interactions.

What Are the Mental Health Benefits of Arts and Crafts?

Movement, problem-solving, and creative expression contribute to overall well-being. Art therapy and other activities can help you develop essential skills. According to Frontiers in Psychology, observing or creating artistic content can do the following:

  • Improve cognition and sensorimotor function
  • Increase self-esteem and self-awareness
  • Promote emotional stability and resilience
  • Provide critical insights
  • Encourage positive long-term changes

Arts and crafts can provide an ideal space for practicing the coping skills you learn during therapy sessions. You can also use art as a way to express things that you have trouble verbalizing. Instead of going through your feelings in therapy, you can express them through writing, music, dance, or artwork. Different styles of art can provide emotional relief if you have difficulty finding healthy ways to process certain emotions.

How Can You Use Arts and Crafts to Improve Long-Term Recovery?

Art can have a cumulative positive effect on mental health. The benefits make it an excellent tool for rehabilitation, aftercare, and long-term recovery. You will continue to improve if you regularly participate in creative activities. Many people attend art, dance, or music therapy during recovery as a form of aftercare. For many people, art is a way to connect with internalized processes and beliefs. You can create art for your own emotional processing. Then, you can use it as a way to express your feelings, thoughts, and values to others.

Long-Term Physical Health Effects of Creative Therapy

In addition to providing emotional relief and improving mental health, creative therapy and hobbies also positively affect physical health. Your mind and body are connected, and taking steps to improve one will positively affect the other. Some known health benefits of creative therapy include the following:

  • Reduced pain for individuals who struggle with chronic health issues
  • Decreased physical effects of stress, anxiety, and depression
  • Improved quality of life

Substance use disorder (SUD) can lead to various symptoms that affect emotional and physical health. Artistic hobbies can reduce the effects of those symptoms, improving overall wellness. You will feel better if you regularly participate in physical activities and exercises.

The Importance of Learning New Hobbies

Hobbies allow you to expand your social circle. In addition, learning new activities can improve mental and physical health. If your hobby involves creativity, movement, problem-solving, or social interactions, you may experience the following:

  • Decreased feelings of loneliness or isolation
  • Improved mood and positivity
  • Lower risk of relapse
  • Increased self-confidence and self-efficacy
  • Improved conflict resolution skills

When you’re in recovery, you often have too much time on your hands. Many people must find new ways to fill the time previously spent planning, participating in, or recovering from substance abuse. Hobbies and physical activities provide a healthy distraction and can help you continue moving forward in your recovery. You can work with your care team at Newport Beach Recovery Center to discover activities that interest you and support your recovery goals.

Rehabilitation requires a lot of focus, energy, and motivation to continue making progress. Many people benefit from taking time to relax and practice self-expression through low-stress activities. Arts, crafts, and other activities can effectively complement evidence-based therapy like CBT. Newport Beach Recovery Center offers various options for creative expression. You will have an opportunity to try different types of arts and crafts to see what works best for you. Observing or participating in creative activities can improve your overall well-being and increase your quality of life. You can take advantage of our facility’s many complimentary therapies and treatments. To learn more about our services and the programs we offer, call us today at (888) 850-0363.