Recent data reveals that teen drug use has jumped an estimated 61 percent between 2010 and 2020. While some teens are experimenting, substance use cannot be ignored–teens need an outlet to deal with their emotions. Creative expression has the power to help young adults overcome substance use and mental health disorders. In particular, art therapy is an engaging way for teens to share their thoughts and feelings in a non-judgmental environment. Treatment programs commonly provide this programming because it provides a way to share emotions that may be too hard to express verbally. At Destinations for Teens, our creative therapy services allow young adults to explore various forms of self-expression. From art therapy ideas to yoga and dance therapy, young adults have the opportunity to create freely and share their experiences.
What Is Art Therapy?
Creating art is an enriching experience for everyone. It provides families an opportunity to focus on creating something together and establishing a good memory. Communities can come together to create murals that beautify their spaces. And for individuals, it is a calming practice that allows them to focus on their ideas. Art therapy is a supplemental program supporting mental health practices. According to the American Art Therapy Association, the presence of creative therapy can:
- Enhance self-esteem
- Improve the ability to be self-aware
- Improve emotional and sensorimotor functions
- Promote emotional resilience
- Cultivate the importance of insight
- Enable people to feel less isolated and improve their social skills
- Resolve conflicts
- Decrease anxiety and depression
Art therapy activities have the power to engage teen participants’ minds and bodies, improving their emotional state. The ability to express ideas through art is very different from being able to verbally articulate. Art therapists can use multiple sensory, physical, interpersonal, and intrapersonal skills to help teens communicate. In addition, visual and symbolic expression empowers teens to share their experiences with others and continue to navigate their recovery. Finally, an art therapy program will support teens in developing positive thoughts. Shifting their thinking can help teens feel less stressed. When teens have decreased negative feelings, they can focus on their sobriety versus numbing their pain with substances.
Art Therapy Activities and Ideas
Teens can participate in creative expression and remain on the road to recovery in many different ways. They can engage in several art therapy activities using various artistic mediums. In an art therapy program, teens are encouraged to participate in activities that they find enjoyable. An art therapy program can include:
- Jewelry making
- Knitting and crocheting
In addition to the various art therapy activities, some specific ideas can especially engage teens. Some art therapy ideas for teens could be:
- Creative writing activities such as poetry, stories, and journaling
- Crafting projects using various materials
- Creating collages
- Designing dream catchers
- Designing jewelry using materials such as beads, wires, and gems
- Painting abstract art and learning to mix colors
- Sketching self-portraits, still-life drawings, and line drawings
- Working with clay to create pottery or dishes
Find Relief Through Art Therapy At Destinations for Teens
When your teen participates in art therapy activities, they can express their emotions creatively. Art therapy removes the stress of expressing ideas verbally, which is challenging for some young adults struggling with substance use or mental health disorders. Therapists can also combine other treatment plans with art therapy for a safe and effective treatment. Destinations for Teens provides art therapy and other creative therapy services to our clients. At our facilities, teens can participate in yoga, music, photography, and even surf therapy. If you believe your teen needs support, contact us at 877.466.0620, and let’s get started.