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Reuters Features Bradt on Creative Arts Therapies for Cancer Patients

June 12, 2013

Joke Bradt, PhD, an associate professor in the Creative Arts Therapies department, was interviewed for an article on about how creative arts therapies can relieve anxiety and similar symptoms among people with cancer. The article discusses a study conducted between 1989 and 2011 that analyzed how cancer patients receiving creative arts therapies felt after treatment. On the whole, people with cancer who were assigned to creative arts therapies interventions reported less depression, anxiety and pain and a better quality of life during the programs than those who were put on a wait list or continued receiving their usual care, the article says. "People with cancer very often feel like their body has been taken over by the cancer. They feel overwhelmed," said Bradt to the reporter at Reuters. "To be able to engage in a creative process… that stands in a very stark contrast to sort of passively submitting oneself to cancer treatments," Bradt continued.

At the end of the article Bradt said to the Reuters reporter that working directly with an arts therapist may be most helpful for some patients, but is not essential. People looking to refocus away from the anxiety of a cancer diagnosis and treatment can join a choir or an art class, for example. "We all know that music or art or just aesthetic beauty in general makes us feel better," she said. "I do not want to underestimate the power of just the arts by themselves."