Ozark Trails understands that parents want to send a child to a safe, monitored environment where their child receives personal care, and individual therapies that help heal emotional, behavioral and mental disorders–whether brought on by trauma, foster care, adoption or family issues.
And while the young child or teen enrolls our therapeutic boarding school for counseling, treatment, and improving academic/life skills, Ozark Trails also helps students improve emotional and physical health through Sand Tray Therapy.
What is Sand Tray Therapy?
“Sand tray therapy is a combination of play therapy and art therapy. The therapist provides the client with a tray or box filled with sand as well as a variety of miniature toys to create a play world. Toys may include anything from farm animals and dinosaurs to people and cars. Trees, fences, gates, doors, and buildings are common as well.”
“Those who offer this type of therapy believe clients will create a world that represents their internal struggles or conflicts. After the sand play is complete, the therapist and the client often discuss what was observed—the toys that were chosen, how they were arranged, and any symbolic or metaphorical meanings.”1
In Sand Tray therapy, individuals who have experienced a traumatic event such as abuse or a catastrophic incident can safely express their feelings using the sand and toys as representatives of their own experiences. Although this type of therapy is used most often with children, sand play therapy also can be helpful for teens and adults.
What are the Benefits of Sand Tray Therapy?
Research shows that sand tray therapy also can help increase emotional expression while reducing the psychological distress that may come from discussing traumatic events or experiences. Research also shows that Sand Tray Therapy reduces symptoms of many mental health issues and increases resilience. Many children are unable to verbalize emotional states, particularly in the face of trauma, neglect or abuse. The nonverbal nature of Sand Tray therapy and the familiar medium of sand can help children achieve feelings of comfort and security. Children and adolescents can also relieve aggression while interacting with their inner emotions through Sand Tray Therapy. The scene created acts as a reflection of the person’s own life and allows them the opportunity to resolve conflicts, remove obstacles, and gain acceptance of self. Childhood behavioral health conditions that sand tray therapists work with include: Anxiety, PTSD, Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder, Reactive Attachment Disorder, Acute Stress Disorder, Depression, and more.
Sand Tray Therapy Improves Your Child’s Progress at Ozark Trails.
That’s why Ozark Trails offers Sand Tray Therapy in addition to Individual and Group therapy. We want each student to experience effective counseling as well as improve daily life at school, and back home with family. If you want to learn more about how Sand Tray Therapy helps students open up and heal at our therapeutic boarding school, please call (417) 278-6868 now.
Sources: https://www.verywellmind.com/what-is-sand-tray-therapy-4589493#:~:text=Sand%20tray%20therapy%20is%20a,to%20create%20a%20play%20world. https://www.goodtherapy.org/learn-about-therapy/types/sand-tray-sand-play-therapy