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Question: Your extra credit assignment is to write a 6-8 page research paper on art therapy trauma treatment. This paper is to be in APA 7th edition format

Question:

Your extra credit assignment is to write a 6-8 page research paper on art therapy trauma treatment. This paper is to be in APA 7th edition format with a title page and reference page (no abstract required) and have a minimum of at least 6 academic sources. You can use my lecture as a jumping off point but please do not cite the lecture. There is a significant amount of literature on this topic so finding sources should be relatively easy. The textbook has chapters on neuroscience and trauma treatment that may be helpful, including a list of references at the end of each chapter. If you do not have the textbook, there are two copies of it on reserve at the library that you can use and there is a PDF version on Canvas. If you are unsure how to effectively find references or that your known techniques for finding references is not working, I highly recommend you utilize the library’s psychology research guide or schedule an appointment with your librarian Hilary Smith for additional support.

If you have questions about the mechanics of writing this paper (structure, formatting, grammar, editing etc.) I highly recommend you utilize the Learning and Academic Resource Center. They operate a writing center to support in these areas.

In your research paper please address the following points:

1)    Briefly discuss the definition of trauma from a psychological perspective and how it can impact mental health. This point here could be a book in itself so be careful about getting sucked into a rabbit hole! Just focus on demonstrating your general understanding of this knowledge so you can move on to art therapy specifically.

2)    Discuss the unique advantages of art therapy treatment for trauma. What about art therapy makes it a preferred treatment option? Why is it unique in its benefits compared to other available treatments?

3)    Please make sure to include why art therapy is advantageous for trauma treatment from a neuroscience perspective. Your entire paper does not need to be devoted to this perspective, but it should be included

My Notes:

Treating Trauma Through Art Therapy

Esmeralda Mejia

Introduction to Art Therapy

Jordan Gonzales

25 April, 2024

1)    Briefly discuss the definition of trauma from a psychological perspective and how it can impact mental health.

In the United States, 70% of adults have experienced trauma at some point in their lives.

What is trauma?

Trauma is an emotional response to a scarring experience. This can be a result of unpredictable and heavy experiences that are out of one’s control, such as mourning a death or seeing something that causes distress to the body and mind.

Types of trauma:

There are four forms of trauma. Acute trauma, chronic trauma, complex trauma, and secondary/vicarious trauma. Acute trauma tends to be a single traumatic experience, such as being in a car wreck. As for chronic trauma, this is repeated traumatic experiences events. Complex trauma …  Lastly, secondary trauma, also known as vicarious trauma,  is …

How can trauma impact mental health?

Trauma has a great impact on one’s mental health.  According to .. 

Effects of trauma? Side of the brain affected?

Aside from mental health, trauma also impacts the body and your overall well-being. It can make it difficult to continue your day-to-day routine and complete simple tasks.

Brain/body functioning and development

Development of acute stress reactions 

Long-term post-traumatic stress disorder

Negative health conditions

Can be inherited – intergenerational- trauma

Nature of trauma:

Nonverbal phenomenon

Non-linear 

fMRI studies show that when thinking of traumatic memories, the left side of the brain (logical thinking, higher reasoning) shuts off and the right side of the brain becomes “overactive.”

Memories of traumatic events get “stuck” in the right side of the brain and in short-term memory because the brain relives events to try and understand and solve the problem. Coding to long-term memory is blocked.

Loss of executive functioning – the reason why talking about trauma is difficult

Individuals often report a lack of appropriate words to describe their traumatic experience. This can lead to secondary traumatic experiences and the formation of other feelings such as shame, fear, confusion, anxiety, frustration, and loneliness. 

The right side of the brain also is responsible for the generation of stories, music, art, movement, and memories of the senses. It is the “creative” non-logical side.

This means there is a biological advantage to art therapy as a treatment modality for trauma-related disorders that can allow a person to access and create a coherent narrative of trauma and move toward healing.

2)    

Discuss the unique advantages of art therapy treatment for trauma

What about art therapy makes it a preferred treatment option? 

Why is it unique in its benefits compared to other available treatments?

3) 

Please include why art therapy is advantageous for trauma treatment from a neuroscience perspective. 

Your entire paper does not need to be devoted to this perspective but should be included.

Art therapy as trauma treatment:

References

6 academic sources

Textbook

Meera Rastogi, Rachel P. Feldwisch, Michelle Pate, Joseph Scarce – Foundations of Art Therapy_ Theory and Applications-Academic Press (2022)-2.pdf

Art therapy can help people heal from trauma.

Art therapy is great to help with processing trauma and developing positive coping skills to assist with …

Art therapy allows the patient to visualize their current feelings and work on overcoming the “bridge” to reach their future goals.

Seeking professional help is very important when experiencing a traumatic event

Trauma can make you debilitate and impact your social interactions 

WHAT IS TRAUMA

Trauma comes from an event that is “extreamly upsetting and at least temporarily overwhelms the individual’s internal recources”

Principles of Trauma Therapy: A Guide to Symptoms, Evaluation, and Treatment … By John N. Briere, Catherine Scott

Working with trauma survivors can show us the worst that a person can do to another

Trauma survivors how us that it is possible to heal and overcome challenges placed in our lives and how we can grow away from the trauma

Notes: 

Since the dawn of humanity, art has been used worldwide as a redemptive force to cope with trauma. The Art Therapy for Trauma Recovery and Response chapter sheds new light on the current causes and consequences of trauma on the human condition and explores exciting treatments as a step toward unraveling the mystery of the healing power of art. Wayne Ramirez (personal communication, May 9, 2021)

Introduction

In the United States, trauma affects approximately 70% of adults at some point in their lives, presenting as an emotional response to intensely distressing events that often exceed one’s ability to cope. This paper explores the application of art therapy as a therapeutic intervention for trauma, highlighting its unique advantages and neuroscientific underpinnings. The discussion draws on a range of scholarly sources to illustrate how art therapy facilitates the processing of trauma, thereby promoting mental health and well-being.

Definition and Impact of Trauma on Mental Health

Trauma is defined as an emotional response to a deeply disturbing event that overwhelms an individual’s capacity to cope, often resulting in long-term psychological impact. Types of trauma include acute trauma from a single incident, chronic trauma from repeated events, complex trauma from diverse and invasive events, and secondary or vicarious trauma experienced by those exposed to trauma in a secondary context, such as therapists or caregivers.

The impact of trauma extends beyond emotional distress, affecting brain function and the ability to process memories and regulate emotions. Trauma often disrupts the logical processing of the left hemisphere of the brain while overactivating the sensory and emotional circuits of the right hemisphere. This imbalance can lead to significant cognitive and emotional regulation difficulties, manifesting in various psychological symptoms and disorders.

Neuroscience of Trauma

Delve deeper into the neurological impacts of trauma by examining how traumatic experiences alter brain structures and neural pathways. Discuss neuroimaging studies that have identified changes in the hippocampus, amygdala, and prefrontal cortex in individuals with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). These changes help explain the symptoms of hyperarousal, avoidance, and re-experiencing that are characteristic of PTSD. Highlight how art therapy can stimulate neural plasticity, aiding the reorganization of brain networks affected by trauma.

Art Therapy Methodologies

Expand on the specific methodologies used in art therapy for trauma treatment, such as drawing, painting, sculpture, and digital art creation. Describe how each modality can cater to different age groups and individual preferences, which is crucial for engagement in therapy. Discuss directive and non-directive approaches and their applications based on the severity and type of trauma.

Clinical Evidence Supporting Art Therapy

Include a review of empirical studies and clinical trials that demonstrate the efficacy of art therapy for trauma. Present case studies that show transformations in trauma patients before and after undergoing art therapy sessions. Statistical evidence can provide a strong foundation for the therapeutic claims made in the paper.

Challenges and Future Directions

Discuss the challenges faced by practitioners in this field, such as the need for more widespread training in trauma-informed art therapy and the integration of these approaches in traditional mental health settings. Explore future directions, such as the potential for digital and remote art therapy sessions, which have become increasingly relevant due to technological advancements and the COVID-19 pandemic.

Conclusion

Reiterate the importance of art therapy as a preferred option for trauma treatment due to its ability to bridge the gap between emotional experience and verbal expression. It supports the healing process by engaging the creative processes of the brain, which are intrinsically linked to the non-logical, sensory, and emotional functions that are often heightened in trauma survivors. By fostering a non-verbal pathway for expression and processing, art therapy not only helps in managing the symptoms of trauma but also aids in the holistic recovery of individuals, making it a vital tool in the landscape of trauma therapy.

Ideas on finding sources: 

– Cited work/refrences on the book, Michelle Pate, Joseph Scarce – Foundations of Art Therapy_ Theory and Applications-Academic Press (2022)-2.pdfDownloadAlternative formatsInfo CloseView previous file 

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