Clay Therapy For Recovery | 8784
ISSN: 2155-6105

Journal of Addiction Research & Therapy
Open Access

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Clay therapy for recovery

2nd International Conference and Exhibition on Addiction Research & Therapy

Gary Winship

Posters: J Addict Res Ther

DOI: 10.4172/2155-6105.S1.012

T his paper will report on the development of a major research grant programme in the UK which will be exploring the development of arts intervention as a medium for helping people on recovery pathways. As a therapeutic medium there has been very little research that has investigated the qualities and therapeutic properties of play with clay. Early research data from University of Nottingham, where laboratory tests with subjects modelling clay has been set against anecdotal clinical field data, it has been possible to advance a theory of task immersion in clay sculpting which appears to have a paradoxical effect in increasing emotional and social communication. In other words, as clients working with clay become immersed in the clay sculpting, they seem to experience an increase in group relating capabilities. Using anecdotal data based on some recent workshops doing group clay sculpting with recovering alcoholics, this paper will propose that there are a combination of factors in group clay sculpting, from the mneunomic process of situational memory, to an inchoate idea that we have about clay acting as a very visual objectification of creating new memory traces, harnessing an emotional release which is concretely created and in the sculpt itself

Gary Winship has worked in the addictions field since 1981 when he began working on the in-patient unit at the Bethlem Royal Hospital which was led by Phillip Connell and as a trainee he worked on Griffith Edwards in-patient ward for alcoholics at the Maudsely. He later took charge of one of the in-patient drug addiction treatment wards where he developed an innovative democratic therapeutic community programme. He also worked at the Maudsley as a full-time clinical research with Mike Gossop and John Strang. He co-authored the treatment protocols for the first dedicated methadone maintenance clinic at the Maudsley. As an out-patient NHS psychotherapist in Berkshire, as well as continuing to see patient with addictive and compulsive disorders, he worked as a consultant to a number of secure services treating offenders with addiction problems including Broadmoor Hospital. He has also supported the work of East-West detox arranging for people from Europe to enter treatment at the Thamkrabok Monastery in Thailand. He has acted as policy feed advisor to government (1997) and most recently with the current administration. He has published over 100 papers and his book The Spike & the Moon-Why People Take Drugs (2012) offers a front-line account of encountering drug users in psychotherapy and was described by the comedienne Jo Brand as a fascinating read