Art therapy is part of the collaborative care intervention that children receive in the Pediatric Care Unit at National Jewish Health. The Art Therapy program was established in 1983 and continues to be offered as an integral part of patients' evaluation and treatment.
How It Helps
Art therapy is particularly effective with children as they have a natural propensity toward creating. Art therapists strive to better understand the child's perspective on living with a chronic illness, to help him or her to express feelings that may be difficult to verbalize and to foster effective coping skills, all through the metaphor of art.
View the Art Therapy Galleries.
Many families with children and/or adolescents have come to the National Jewish Health Pediatric Day Program for evaluation and treatment of severe pulmonary, allergic, dermatological or immune disorders. As a part of our Behavioral Health Services included in the Day Program, art therapy groups are offered for patients ages 5 years and older.
Group therapy at National Jewish Health offers patients the opportunity to meet and spend time with other kids who may be having similar experiences and feelings associated with living with a chronic illness and with being hospitalized. Children's artwork often reveals feelings about their illnesses such as fear, anger, sadness, hopelessness and anxiety. Group therapy is a forum where children and adolescents feel welcome to explore and discuss fears and anxieties. When feelings like these are expressed and identified, a sense of relief and control often follows.