Connecting Parents of Children With Chronic Pain Through Art Therapy

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To help address the unique needs of parents of children with chronic pain, a four module, parent-only, group art therapy curriculum was designed and implemented within an interdisciplinary pain rehabilitation treatment program. We evaluated perceived satisfaction and helpfulness of the group intervention. Fifty-three parents of children experiencing chronic pain enrolled in a day hospital interdisciplinary pain rehabilitation program participated. The voluntary parent art therapy group was offered one time per week for 1 hour. Participants completed a measure of satisfaction, helpfulness, and perceived social support at the end of each group session. Parents enjoyed participating in the group, agreed that they would try art therapy again, and found it to be a helpful, supportive, and validating experience. Initial results are promising that group art therapy is an appropriate and helpful means of supporting parents of children with chronic pain during interdisciplinary pain rehabilitation.

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