Erica Cardenas

Therapy through art

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Art forms, including music, dance and painting, have been shown to  have a significant and positive effect on both children and adults. In fact, therapy through art is based on the belief that the creative process involved in artistic self-expression helps people to resolve conflicts and problems, develop interpersonal skills, manage behavior, reduce stress, increase self-esteem and self-awareness, and achieve insight.

According to the Arizona Art Therapy Association, art therapy by definition is a mental health profession that uses the creative process of art-making to improve and enhance the physical, mental and emotional well-being of individuals of all ages. 

Artplay in Phoenix is offering emotional-wellness sessions for children ages 3-15 using art-making, music, movement and play to explore and learn to manage feelings. Additionally, they are offering “drop-in” art projects that children can create and take home for $15. 

Artplay also offers “Helpacks” that parents may order on-line. Each pack includes five therapy-based toys that help kids manage their emotions, plus a fun explanation sheet. Parents can choose from the Sadness Helpack, the Anger Helpack, the Fear Helpack or the Anxiety Helpack. The packs are $25 each and can be ordered via Artplay’s website at

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