Did you ever imagine that drawing could do wonders for your well-being?
Drawing is not just an activity enjoyed by children. Many older adults can benefit from activities like drawing and painting. Art therapy is a relaxing, fun experience for lots of older adults, while allowing them to enhance communication, cognitive, social, and motor skills. When older adults take part in such activities, they are utilizing both the right and left hemispheres of their brains by using both creativity and logic.
Read on to discover the twelve benefits of drawing or art therapy:
1. Promote Self-Expression
It can be difficult for older adults with dementia or Alzheimer's to write or communicate effectively. Drawing provides new self-expression opportunities when language abilities fall short.
The brain regions that contribute to emotion and artistic appreciation remain intact despite the loss of memory. Patients with Alzheimer's can use art to better express their thoughts and feelings through their paintings and drawings. The lines, shapes, and colors they use can say a lot about the individual.
2. Improve Cognitive Function
Drawing enables older adults to think creatively and improves cognitive function. Learning something such as a new art skill stimulates healthy brain activity and keep the mind sharp. Indeed, studies have demonstrated that art might slow the development rate of memory conditions like Alzheimer's. For older adults living with memory loss, drawing can be a path for communication and improvement.
3. Improve Physical and Motor Skills
Drawing can lead to improved motor skills. Making bead bracelets and jewelry is an excellent activity for practicing motor skills. Use bigger beads, so it is not difficult to grasp and position the string's beads. This exercise strengthens not only their motor skills but also their cognitive skills and coordination of their hand-eye. The same is true for drawing. It takes concentration and intentional motor skills to control the pencil on paper. This practice assists in hand-eye coordination and control.
4. Increase Social Interaction
Drawing is one such activity that can offer people the opportunity to interact and socialize, particularly for adults who often become isolated and face loneliness in their later years. Joining classes, groups, or participating in creative community activities provides a great way to meet and connect with others with similar interests.
Increased social relationships also lead to better well-being and improved psychological health.
It can also help people think about life differently by encouraging them to engage parts of the body and brain they wouldn't otherwise use. Try new drawing techniques and learn new styles. Exploring new movements and thoughts will help reframe perceptions and find new opportunities for satisfaction.
6. Generate Creativity
Older adults who never picked up a crayon or pencil for drawing after childhood may feel like they have lost touch with their creative or artistic selves. However, creativity is such an important skill that frequently comes in handy in day-to-day life. To solve any problem, regardless of size, it helps to be able to think outside the box. Drawing helps keep the mind active, engaged, and ready for the next challenge.
7. Relieve Stress
Art is a common therapy for ones with cancer and their caregivers. Often, cancer patients experience anxiety, anger, fear, disappointment, depression, and so forth. In a traditional support group, these emotions may be difficult to convey. In most cases, people who have traumatic experiences such as cancer often internalize their pain and suffering if they cannot dispel their feelings effectively. Activities like drawing help people share their thoughts, emotions, and experiences that are challenging to put into words.
8. Improve Appreciation for Art and Culture
Practicing, studying, and talking about activities related to art drives a better understanding of it. The individual is motivated by others' work that enables them to also be the recipient of this sort of communication dating back to the commencement of humanity. Artists also develop a greater understanding of their subjects and related topics.
9. Improve Problem-Solving
You might be surprised to know that drawing can improve adults' problem-solving abilities and critical thinking. An individual must understand that more than one solution to each problem can be found.
One gets various out-of-box ideas that trigger improved brain functionality from a blank sketch pad to finalize the art. In the long term, these ideas and thought processes pay off. An art lover will always offer creative solutions to challenging problems.
10. Earn a Sense of Accomplishment
Whether an individual has been drawing for many years or just started to unleash their artistic capabilities, looking at the pieces they completed should provide a sense of accomplishment and pride, thus boosting self-esteem. Reactions from friends and family are sure to strengthen this feeling of accomplishment even further!
11. Increase Emotional Intelligence
Art can improve emotional intelligence by bringing us in contact with our inner feelings. When one uses art as a form of self-expression, the individual tends to think about how he/she feels and the reason behind those feelings. Art may be used to express everything a person feels at a particular moment, whether it is happiness, sorrow, or rage. When art is used to convey an emotion, it offers a cathartic release during that activity. While allowing our emotions to flow through art, we obtain a better grasp of our sentiments.
The Final Verdict!
In short, drawing can be extremely rewarding for older adults. It can promote positive feelings, boost physical ability, and offer calming effects. Through the great fun of creating art, older adults will lead a better quality of life. With so many benefits of drawing, it's no surprise that many senior living communities offer drawing and painting classes. So, it is a great idea to help seniors in your life sign up for a drawing class to begin discovering their creative side.
Let us know below, what is your favorite part about drawing?