Unconventional Therapy: The Arts

When it comes to physical therapy there are many techniques available, some of which are very unconventional. Take dancing for example. There are many people who say they “dance until they feel better,” and it turns out there’s some truth behind it. Check out the four types of unconventional therapy listed below. More therapists are using these techniques to treat patients across the nation. How many of these unconventional therapy techniques would you use?

Four Types of Art-Inspired Unconventional Therapy

1. Unconventional – Role Playing Games (RPG)

One registered recreational therapist purchased a wheelchair-friendly trailer so that he could bring his practice to his patient’s doorsteps. Hawke Robinson makes his rounds in his trailer. He’s constructed the trailer so that it contains more than 50 musical instruments and games, such as Dungeons and Dragons, for his RPG therapy sessions. His goal is to use these isntruments and games to role play with his pages and help people with disabilities such as Attention Deficit Disorder and Cerebral Palsy. He came up with this idea because of years of research on how to help people recover from traumatic brain injuries. This is an unconventional therapy that could catch on in the years to come! 

2. Tango Therapy


unconventional therapy


The idea of dance as a form of therapy isn’t exactly a new one. However, the one targeting neuropathic patients is. In fact, an article in the Columbus Dispatch reported a story on how dance as a form of therapy for neuropathy is taking off. The article tells the tale of how Mimi Lamantia, who has a concentration in dance and pre-medicine, received a grant to study the effects of Argentine Tango as a form of therapy among cancer survivors. This is because neuropathy is developed by about 40 percent of chemotherapy patients. In Lamantia’s study, patients are prompted to stand on a sensor with software that is able to detect their medial-lateral sway or their balance’s effectiveness. This way they can measure how dance therapy is helping. So far, the study indicates that the tango sessions have been improving the patient’s’ sway.  Tim Hickey, a cancer survivor using tango therapy, can attest that he’s seen an improvement. He has even gained more feeling in his feet, the Dispatch reported. 

3. Shakespearean Therapy

In the midst of the struggle to find the cause and a cure to autism, families are often desperate to find a solution. In fact, an estimated 88 percent of families try fringe therapies to alleviate the symptoms of autism. Shakespearean therapy may be one to consider. Shakespearean therapy, otherwise known as Hunter Heartbeat method, is essentially a drama-based intervention program that uses the rhythm and repetition of lines from Shakespearean plays. The program allows autistic students to recite and act out these lines. This activity has actually helped many of them improve their language, social interaction, and even recognition of facial expressions. A British actress, Kelly Hunter, developed the program. You can learn more about it here

4. Doll Therapy

Seniors who are diagnosed with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease often feel alone. Many of them suffer from depression. But those who are natural caregivers find comfort and purpose with holding a doll. Senior care facilities are noticing the positive effects that doll therapy has on dementia and Alzheimer’s diseases patients. Residents who can get aggressive or agitated suddenly feel calm when given a doll. This simple concept is so effective that a lot of senior facilities across the country are adopting this method. One facility even installed a nursery for dolls, filled with books and diapers.

Have you tried any of these unconventional methods before? Share with us in the comments below!

Author: Allied Travel Careers

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