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|Author||Jensen, A.; Bonde, L.O.|
|Title||The use of arts interventions for mental health and wellbeing in health settings|
Jensen A, Bonde LO. (2018) The use of arts interventions for mental health and wellbeing in health settings, Perspect Public Health, 138 (4), 209-214
|Link to article|| https://doi.org/10.1177/1757913918772602
|Abstract||Aims: This literature review aims to illustrate the variety and multitude of studies showing that participation in arts activities and clinical arts interventions can be beneficial for citizens with mental and physical health problems. The article is focused on mental health benefits because this is an emerging field in the Nordic countries where evidence is demanded from national health agencies that face an increasing number of citizens with poor mental health and a need for non-medical interventions and programmes. Methods: A total of 20 articles of interest were drawn from a wider literature review. Studies were identified through the search engines: Cochrane Library, Primo, Ebscohost, ProQuest, Web of Science, CINAHL, PsycINFO, PubMed and Design and Applied Arts Index. Search words included the following: arts engagement + health/hospital/recovery, arts + hospital/evidence/wellbeing, evidence-based health practice, participatory arts for wellbeing, health + poetry/literature/dance/singing/music/community arts, arts health cost-effectiveness and creative art or creative activity + health/hospital/recovery/mental health. The inclusion criteria for studies were (1) peer review and (2) empirical data. Results: The studies document that participation in activities in a spectrum from clinical arts interventions to non-clinical participatory arts programmes is beneficial and an effective way of using engagement in the arts to promote holistic approaches with health benefits. Engagement in specially designed arts activities or arts therapies can reduce physical symptoms and improve mental health issues. Conclusion: Based on the growing evidence of the arts as a tool for enhancing mental health wellbeing, and in line with the global challenges in health, we suggest that participatory arts activities and clinical arts interventions are made more widely available in health and social settings. It is well-documented that such activities can be used as non-medical interventions to promote public health and wellbeing.
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|Results indicate that hospital staff have a positive view of music intervention, perceiving this as beneficial to patients. .||Arts and cultural activities in health environments were seen as a tool for reducing stress and burnout, improving mood, work efforts, patient/ staff relationships, working environment and wellbeing. .||The actual benefits have been documented as better mental health on different levels. .||Improvement in the wellbeing of participants with short-term and longterm mental health problems was also found. .||In addition, informants felt that arts and cultural activities could improve communication between staff and patients by building and strengthening relationships. .||A number of studies about the use and effects of arts and cultural activities to promote wellbeing in healthcare environment have been conducted in recent years. .||Results: The studies document that participation in activities in a spectrum from clinical arts interventions to non-clinical participatory arts programmes is beneficial and an effective way of using engagement in the arts to promote holistic approaches with health benefits. .||Engagement in specially designed arts activities or arts therapies can reduce physical symptoms and improve mental health issues. .||The mental health benefits of participatory arts are highlighted in numerous reports and reviews.2-4 Furthermore, there is a growing international evidence base showing the impact that the arts have on health and wellbeing of communities and individuals.5 .||By suggesting that engagement in arts activities can be useful tools to address some of the global mental health challenging identified by WHO and other research, this article will focus on the various results from projects within a spectrum from clinical arts therapies to non-clinical participatory arts programmes associated with mental health benefits, for a range of populations including persons with physical ill health or mental health problems and health professionals. .||The study showed that using art therapy could be an important strategy for controlling chronic disease as well as contributing to a feeling of reduced pain and increased wellbeing in women with chronic pain.18 In summary, there is good evidence that participation in meaningful creative activities can lead to improved mental health. .||Non-clinical programmes: AOP There is good and variable documentation and evidence showing that non-clinical engagement in arts, culture and creative activities can increase mental health wellbeing of individuals who are experiencing mental health problems. .||Despite some methodological limitations in the studies studied, it was found that the majority of staff members in the studies felt that engagement in art and cultural activities had a positive impact on health and wellbeing of patients. .||CONCLUSION The selected studies document that engagement and participation in the arts - in a spectrum from clinical art therapy interventions to non-clinical, specially designed arts activities - can be effective ways of using non-medical interventions to promote holistic approaches with mental health benefits. .||Arts activities have been documented as holistic, non-medical, low-cost interventions with the potential of promoting public mental health and wellbeing..||Aims: This literature review aims to illustrate the variety and multitude of studies showing that participation in arts activities and clinical arts interventions can be beneficial for citizens with mental and physical health problems. .||RESULTS/FINDINGS The mental health benefits of participating in arts activities are manifold and to illustrate this we have used examples from the following review categories: (1) arts therapy and participatory arts interventions for various illnesses and diagnoses, (2) non-clinical programmes: AOP and (3) arts and cultural programmes to enhance mental health of health professionals: Arts therapy and participatory arts interventions for various illnesses and diagnoses Studies show that arts interventions -covering a spectrum from clinical arts interventions over specially designed arts activities with a therapeutic approach, to non-clinical participation in arts activities and experiences - have both positive and reliable psychological effects for patients within a range of diagnosed illnesses. .||Participants reported that the programme created a creative and therapeutic environment and that they experienced social, psychological and therapeutic activity benefits. .||The effects are reported as subjective feelings of increased selfconfidence and wellbeing, being part of a community, building new social relationships, participating in meaningful activities, creating a connection between body and mind, promoting relaxation, fostering a sense of hope and developing new coping mechanisms and experiencing increased sense of selfworth, motivation and aspiration and decreased levels of depression.4,12,19,20 Examples of studies include research from AOP programmes. .||Conclusion: Based on the growing evidence of the arts as a tool for enhancing mental health wellbeing, and in line with the global challenges in health, we suggest that participatory arts activities and clinical arts interventions are made more widely available in health and social settings. .|