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Healing Mental Health with Art

Updated: Feb 26, 2023

According to the World Health Organization, about one in eight people in the world live with a mental disorder. Individuals who have faced displacement from their home countries because of war, adversity, political violence, natural disasters, and other threats are at an even greater risk of developing a mental health challenge in their lifetime.

At ANSAR of Pittsburgh, we recognize that mental health is an integral part of our general well-being and a basic human right. Having good mental health means we are better able to connect, function, cope and thrive.

Studies show that expression through art can help people with depression, anxiety, and stress. Just painting for one hour can reduce stress and negative-feelings. It can even boost your mood and self-confidence through self-expression. That is why we provide Art Therapy Workshops.

Art therapy is not something new. It actually dates back to the mid-20th century, when soldiers returned from World War II and were diagnosed with "shell shock," or more commonly known today as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). To help them process what they had experienced during the war, veterans painted, drew, sculpted and made other forms of art. Those who have experienced trauma have a difficult time articulating what happened to them in words. That is why art therapy is so important. It allows for people to express how they are feeling through nonverbal communication.

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