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Seniors, especially those in senior living communities, benefit from a variety of therapies. While specialized therapies such as physical therapy and occupational therapy focus on one area of a person’s wellbeing, art therapy for seniors carries several benefits for seniors mentally, physically, and socially.

Benefits of art therapy

Karen Kinney, Activities Director at Adel Acres in Adel, Iowa, puts her focus first and foremost on making sure her residents have fun. Art therapy offers seniors chances for purposeful interactions with each other and caregivers, which in turn enhances the senior living community experience. Kinney’s art classes allow her seniors to try new things, stimulate conversation, and nurture camaraderie.

Beyond social impacts, art therapy benefits seniors mentally and physically as well. Increased cognitive function, enhanced motor skills, and improved memory are just a few advantages that skilled nursing and assisted living facilities see among their residents.

How our centers focus on art therapy

When asked what residents enjoy most about art therapy, Kinney responded, “Art allows [residents] to express thoughts, feelings, and emotions even if they don’t realize they are doing so. Having a finished product to display is a true confident builder. Trying something new always sparks curiosity and feeds the imagination.”

Kinney’s favorite art projects aren’t limited to any specific mediums; rather, she prefers art-based activities that offer residents opportunities for revelation about their art, themselves, or the process. “When they see that they can be creative and learn something in the process, that is most gratifying to me as an art teacher.” To maximize the positive effects that art therapy offers, Kinney emphasizes the importance of trying out new techniques, mediums, and styles.

Art therapy holds a special place among senior living communities. Whether residents are looking to explore new activities, improve mental and physical function, or just looking for something fun to do, art therapy for seniors offers endless possibilities. You should feel confident about your choices when you begin your search for senior living options. Start your search by finding the right community for you or your loved one with the community locator.