Imagine a world without art, music, film, singing, dancing, comedy or reading. It would be a very dull place. It would also prove very unhealthy. For a long time now, creative activities in the arts and humanities have offered people worldwide a kind shadow health service, a non-clinical means of maintaining or improving their health and wellbeing. But information about the potential benefits of engaging with creative activities for physical or mental health has not always been made clear.
The Arts for Health series seeks to offer a ground-breaking set of short, easy-to-read books that guide the general public caring for themselves or others, health and social care professionals and those working in charitable or community-led social and cultural initiatives on how different creative activities or practices can help people stay healthy or improve their physical and mental health.
Each volume in the series provides: an introduction and history to the particular creative activity, for example, dancing, comedy or singing, in human society; an accessible overview of the evidence of the value to the specific activity in relation to healthcare, health and wellbeing; examples of how the creative practice can be applied or experienced to improve physical or mental health; information about what helps or what blocks participation in the activity; approaches to how the creative activity can feature in different contexts, from the family home to care homes, community services and hospitals; a list useful links to bodies supporting involvement in the activity; suggested further reading.
The University of Nottingham, UK