So what is art therapy? According to the Art Therapy Alliance, art therapy is used to address psychological and emotional needs by using a variety of different art media including but not limited to painting, drawing, sculpting, collaging, story making, and more.
Art therapy is used for...
Supporting coping skills
Supporting those dealing with substance abuse
...and more (Art Therapy Alliance, 2013).
I also plan to combine music with the art therapy. I have information on their favorite music, which will be valuable when it comes time to make a playlist for some of my art activity ideas. It's amazing how activated the brain is when in the midst of a creative process- especially with Alzheimer's patients. They have a tendency to remember more when the creative juices are flowing. By accompanying the artistic process with some good oldies music, it's possible to bring them back to a place in time- just like songs can bring us back to a place in time: a wedding, a year in college, a vacation, etc. However I should note that the effectiveness of this idea is also dependent upon the stage of the disease for each individual. It may be effective for some and not so much for others.
"About Art Therapy." Art Therapy Alliance . N.p., 2013. Web. 31 July 2013. <http://www.arttherapyalliance.org/AboutArtTherapy.html>.
"Alzheimer's Disease Fact Sheet." National Institute on Aging . N.p., Sept. 2012. Web. 31 July 2013. <http://www.nia.nih.gov/alzheimers/publication/alzheimers-disease-fact-sheet>.