Creative Arts Therapy encompasses forms of therapeutic activity that include the Creative Arts such as Drama and Theater, Visual Arts, Music and Writing. Creative and Therapeutic Art Activities can be used as an alternative to conventional therapy or as a companion to conventional therapy, depending on the goals of the patient. Creative and Therapeutic Arts Activities can be executed on their own, but certain therapeutic goals need to be supervised by a trained professional.
Drama and Theater Art Activities
Drama Therapy Activities by their very nature encourage participants to play. Activities such as games, scene work, playwriting and monologues can be used to help bring people out of their shells and combat such issues as social anxiety, low self-esteem, extreme shyness and other issues. Patients of Drama Therapy can participate in activities alone or in a group.
Visual Art Therapy Activities
Visual Art Therapy is often referred to Expressive Therapy. Depending on the goals of both the therapist and the patient, Visual Art Therapy can be used to heal and transform a number of issues using activities such as creating a self-portrait, seasonal or holiday art, collages or the portrayal of a particular traumatic event that is used to mend emotional wounds of the heart and mind.
Music Therapy Activities
There are several activities used in Music Therapy for healing and rehabilitation purposes. Some activities in Music Therapy include songwriting and guided relaxation or meditation. Some Music Therapy is even used alongside physical therapy activities to help restore the body's natural rhythms, such as the heartbeat, or the rhythm of walking. Another activity is association listening, which is the process of listening to a particular song or piece of music and free-writing the kinds of feelings or thoughts that music provokes.
Creative Writing Therapy Activities
Creative Writing Therapy is used as an expressive form of therapy for self exploration, fulfillment and healing. Creative Writing therapeutic activities can include keeping a daily guided journal, creating a fictional story to work through a particular traumatic event, poetry, "alternative" memoir writing (not entirely true autobiographical writing), writing about childhood and many others. Usually writing therapy exercises are guided by a trained therapist to accomplish the particular goals of the patient.