Art Therapy and Stress Management: Mandala Coloring with Healthcare Professionals

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Babcock, Holly
Master of Arts in Art Therapy
To date, there is little research or evidence of the effectiveness of Mandala usage to reduce stress and anxiety amongst healthcare professionals. Many published studies with the usage of Mandalas have been implemented with college students. According to Smith (2014), drawing conclusions about stress and anxiety reduction techniques with students may not be representative of healthcare professionals, as academic stressors and anxieties are comparatively different from practicing professionals. Twenty-one participants were recruited via advertisement and verbal recruitment from a small, Midwestern healthcare clinic that specializes in gastrointestinal examination, diagnosis, and treatment. Participants included facility staff, such as clerical, third-party coordinators, nursing staff, technicians, and doctors. The Stress-Arousal Checklist (SACL) (Mackay, Cox, Burrows, & Lazzarini, 1978) was administered and completed before and after participation in the Mandala coloring activity. The differences of pre and post inventories were evaluated via statistical analyses by use of Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) software.