Art therapy for children with autism spectrum disorder

Julia Lipska, Klaudia Karina Leś

Affiliation and address for correspondence
Aktualn Neurol 2023, 23 (2), p. 46–51
DOI: 10.15557/AN.2023.0008

Aim: Presentation of the forms of art therapy most commonly used in children with autism spectrum disorder, including their short descriptions, possible ways of working, desirable benefits and impact on children and their parents, as well as an outline of other existing forms of art therapy for children. Materials and methods: In June 2023, we searched through the PubMed and Google Scholar electronic databases. Thesis: There are many forms of art therapy, the most common being music therapy, dance/movement therapy, visual therapy, cinema therapy, and theatre therapy. They have one common aim: if they are successful, they help individuals with autism spectrum disorder to communicate and express their feelings through art, as well as decrease their depression and anxiety levels, and increase relaxation. Usually, the therapy works through mirroring other people’s behaviours, focusing the individual’s emotions on art and understanding body movements and gestures of others as well as the patient’s own. Conclusion: Art therapy may improve social skills in children with autism spectrum disorder, help them externalise their feelings, and have a positive impact on their mental health by decreasing the severity of negative symptoms. It helps them communicate, understand themselves and others, and focus their emotions on their interests and hobbies.

children, autism spectrum disorder, art therapy

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