Express Yourself! Using Art Therapy To Help Treat Addiction

Similar to a memory jar, a self-care box holds small trinkets or scraps of paper. This can be anything from positive affirmations to notes that list goals you want to achieve. In my personal experience, weaving drama therapy techniques into DBT skills training has proven to be profoundly impactful. The Action-Based DBT approach, with its emphasis on storytelling and embodiment, offers an immersive and experiential learning environment that can be especially beneficial for those who find traditional methods challenging. If you’re looking for more science-based ways to help others through CBT, this collection contains 17 validated positive CBT tools for practitioners. Use them to help others overcome unhelpful thoughts and feelings and develop more positive behaviors.

How Art Can Help in Addiction Recovery

This book is specifically aimed at therapists and helping professionals who work with trauma. Some are offered purely remotely, some are hybrid courses that combine a residential component with online learning, and some are campus based. There is also one training institute in Europe and one in Hong Kong, with new trainings emerging all the time.

art therapy projects for addiction

Art Project Ideas to Aid in Recovery

I give the clients various drawing tools (these sharpies work really well on the boxes), cardstock in various colors, and I also like to offer these brightly colored index cards. I instruct them to decorate the outside in ways that represent how they show who they are to the world. While the Draw Your Wall activity can benefit treatment no matter what the issue, in my experience, the Draw Your Wall activity is especially useful for clients who have experienced trauma.


It has many benefits, including providing an outlet for self-expression and helping with personal discovery. Such activity allows them to feel safe and comfortable, especially when they find it difficult to discuss these issues in regular talking therapy sessions. It’s beneficial for those with underlying mental health conditions who may struggle with verbalizing their emotions.

My Own Experience Integrating Drama Therapy and DBT

The box itself can also be decorated to demonstrate the individual’s idea of self-care. The box will hold items the person can turn to for comfort during troubling or challenging times. There is no definitive art therapy for addiction reason that explains why people experience substance use disorders (SUDs). But there is a definite connection between a person’s difficulty in regulating emotion and mood and experiencing SUDs.

Art Therapy Ideas for Substance Abuse Recovery and Behavioral Health

RIT and FDA test digital therapy/avatar to treat addiction, reduce intimate partner violence RIT – Rochester Institute of Technology

RIT and FDA test digital therapy/avatar to treat addiction, reduce intimate partner violence RIT.

Posted: Mon, 12 Jun 2023 07:00:00 GMT [source]

  • You could also have your client craft their own box out of cardstock or cardboard, too.
  • Relapsing occurs when people return to using substances, often to numb themselves from these common stressors and often under the false belief that once the stress has passed, they can return to sobriety.
  • Patients can also learn to understand themselves better through examining their own art and engaging in meaningful dialogue with an art therapist about their work.
  • There have been multiple studies that provide evidence that increased emotional intelligence can prevent people from developing SUDs.
  • While it is possible to include art in your practice if you aren’t a professional art therapist, it’s important to ensure you have training on art therapy and how to use art effectively.
  • While additional studies are needed to examine art therapy and substance use disorders (SUDs), there appears to be a correlation between a mind-body-spirit (holistic) approach to treatment and relapse prevention.

art therapy projects for addiction

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