What is a Traumatic Brain Injury?
Traumatic brain injury is typically the result of a violent blow to the head or body. Brain injuries also occur if an object such as a bullet or shattered piece of skull enters the brain.
A mild traumatic brain injury may temporarily affect brain cells. A more severe traumatic brain injury can cause torn tissues, bleeding, bruising and other physical harm to the brain that can lead to long-term difficulties or even death.
This type of injury presents a significant threat to everyone, but especially soldiers and athletes. The CDC reports that millions of people suffer a brain injury each year. Millions of people around the country deal with brain injury-related physical, cognitive, emotional, and behavioral impairments.
Challenges of Traumatic Brain Injury
When a person experiences a disability or loss, they may feel as though his or her entire world has just fallen apart. Often, they need to relearn activities that were once normal, such as talking, walking, and eating.
Almost all survivors of traumatic brain injury reminisce about the dreams and hopes they had before their injury. Thinking of what was lost often leads to decreased self-worth and a feeling of failure. They need to grieve the loss of their previous lives and learn to reengage in life in new ways.
Art Therapy for Traumatic Brain Injury
While modern medicine restores the body on a practical level, expressive arts provide rehabilitation for the brain and the soul. The expressive art method engages the whole brain. It helps build new neurological connections through a process referred to as neuroplasticity.
Various artistic tasks simulate different areas of the brain, which helps the brain recover from a concussion. Art therapy tackles a variety of emotional, physical, cognitive, and social obstacles that form following a traumatic brain injury.
Benefits of Art Therapy for Traumatic Stress Injury
Art therapy offers help for recuperation, recovery, and cognition through learning to reduce anxiety and social isolation, improve physical coordination, and support memory and attention span.
Art activities stimulate different parts of the brain, so if a patient’s frontal lobes have been impacted by an injury, art therapy can be used to reinforce organization, problem-solving, and memory. In the early stages of recovery from a severe injury, the therapy will focus more on a comfortable therapy environment that reduces stimuli.
Art therapy can tackle a host of physical, emotional, social, and cognitive obstacles that form as a result of traumatic brain injury that includes building fine motor skills to expressing deeply buried hidden feelings.
Remembering things and processing information clearly provides reassurance that “all is not lost” and creates a foundation on which a new life can be built.Contact us today to learn about art therapy for traumatic brain injuries.