What is Expressive Arts Therapy?

Anya Bates, AMFT on Sep 27, 2022 in Treatment Orientation

Expressive art therapy is a psychotherapeutic approach utilizing art and psychology to help treat emotional and mental health issues and behavioral disorders. Expressive art therapy modalities include visual art, music, movement, drama, and writing. Through the art-making process, the individual can express their emotions, reduce stress, increase self-esteem, support self-discovery, and heal what is causing mental health symptoms. Expressive art therapists are master-level clinicians trained to create therapeutic relationships with the participants to facilitate opportunities that will improve cognition and self-awareness as well as increase coping and social skills. The sessions are tailored to meet an individual’s emotional needs.

More benefits to expressive art therapy:


Learn to trust the process

Creative flow

Reduces cortisol levels (stress hormone)

Produces oxytocin, which helps reduce stress

Provides self-development

Increases coping skills

Validates emotions

Self-acceptance and self-compassion

Anya Bates is a Associate Marriage & Family Therapist in Santa Cruz, CA.

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