Date of Award
MA - Master of Arts
Tamar Hadar, PhD, MT-BC
Experiencing trauma in childhood can result in complex symptoms that impact the development as well as the mental, emotional, and physiological health of the child, resonating throughout their lifespan. Various forms of treatments are used to address the behavioral and emotional symptoms in children who experienced trauma such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Exposure Therapy, and Pharmacotherapy, however the vast majority of them do not incorporate a holistic framework when supporting children to process their traumatic experiences, therefore they do not attend to trauma as a catalyst for changes in the mind and body. This literature review aims to examine the use of mindfulness informed art therapy to address symptoms of trauma in children, in a holistic way that allows them to feel grounded and present in their experiences through the creation of art. A critical review of the literature revealed that engagement in mindfulness informed art therapy as an integrated approach in treating children with trauma decreases effects of trauma such as dissociation, avoidance, suppression, and dysregulation. The review of the literature disclosed that both art therapy and mindfulness practices address similar needs in treating children with trauma, and can be used together in a complementary relationship. The findings of this research indicate that art therapy and mindfulness as an integrated approach are able to target and reduce traumatic symptoms in children while enhancing their well-being through an expressive and holistic healing framework. As trauma is an inter-related mind body experience, its treatment should incorporate a holistic framework, in order to treat the human as a whole.
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Jaworski, Emily, "Creating a Space to Externalize: Mindfulness Based Art Therapy for Childhood Trauma, A Literature Review" (2020). Expressive Therapies Capstone Theses. 328.
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