And Breathe… Getting Creative For Health.

March 21, 2018

This week I went to the Manchester Art Gallery which is showcasing their “And breathe…” exhibition.

The exhibition explores the relationship between art & mindfulness with the use of artwork created from Manchester mental health groups and primary schools.

The colour scheme, seating, height and interpretation of art works, along with an audio resource with a range of mindful meditations have all been created to welcome individuals to unwind.

But does art have an effect on health & well-being?

The Department of Health completed some research on the matter. They found that there is a wealth of good practice and evidence base which suggests that arts have a positive impact on health.

The research recognised that the arts can make this positive impact in a variety of ways including; improving health, well-being and quality of life, improving clinical outcomes both from environments and direct treatment and therapy, supporting and training staff members and in promoting patient and public involvement.

In doing so, the arts are delivering real and measurable benefits across a wide range of key health priorities, such as mental health, physical activity, improving working lives and in successful rehabilitation. Thus, enabling the NHS to contribute to key Government initiatives.

Art has also been used as a psychotherapeutic tool in health in the form of art therapy. This is an accredited form of therapy using various methods of art as their primary source of expression and communication.

Art Therapy is facilitated by registered art therapists within the Health Professionals Council. This can be used amongst various individuals including those with various disabilities or diagnoses, children, young adults, adults or the elderly.

Art from manchester art gallery

How does art do this exactly?

Well, The National Alliance for Arts, Health and Well-being suggest that creative activities ease us into a process of focus, concentration, absorption and flow, the same process we experience in meditation.

This type of process has both physical and mental benefits which include lowering blood pressure, increasing serotonin production that improves mood and behaviour, improving emotional stability and improving the immune system.

So, whether it’s the old school dot-to-dot, keeping it neat in the lines, or scribbling all over the page why not try express yourself through the arts today?

The exhibition is free to attend until Friday 15th March 2019.

6 comments so far.

6 responses to “And Breathe… Getting Creative For Health.”

  1. Such an interesting read! And a shamed I missed that exhibition. Life always seems to get in the way 😩

  2. MissPond says:

    What a wonderful exhibition! I really love colouring in to destress 🙂

  3. Corinne says:

    I agree with this, being creative helps me in so many ways!

    Corinne x

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I'm Aimee creator of 'Aims On Health'.

Here you'll find things all health and wellness but my main interests lie in public health.

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