Drama remedy could be a therapeutic software to assist sufferers address most cancers

Marissa Fors, LCSW, OSW-C, C-ASWCM, CCM


Conventional therapeutic interventions present instruments for most cancers sufferers to be taught to deal with their stress and handle unstable feelings. Well being care professionals assist the affected person’s well-being and supply strategies to enhance coping abilities. For some sufferers, emotional assist will be achieved by way of self-creation strategies. Drama remedy is a singular method based mostly on drama, theatre, psychology and psychology and provides many psychological well being advantages.1

Advantages of drama remedy

Introducing expressive and inventive artwork remedy permits people with most cancers to learn from a number of types of assist. Drama remedy offers a chance for sufferers to discover these choices. In response to the Drama Remedy Affiliation of North America, drama remedy is the usage of intentional drama and/or theater procedures to realize therapeutic targets and can be utilized for sufferers experiencing transition, loss, social exclusion, and isolation.1 Drama remedy helps to eliminate stress and nervousness1and damage2 Along with selling compassion and wholesome relationships.2

There are various types of drama remedy that embrace play, projection, function, story, metaphor, empathy, testimony, efficiency and improvisation.1 By means of theater and storytelling, sufferers can discover feelings in numerous methods. Self-expression will be by way of physique motion, language, or a mixture of the two.2 Sufferers can share their emotions with out judgment or penalties, which, in flip, promotes security and self-efficacy.

A most cancers analysis could be a very isolating and lonely expertise. Drama remedy helps to cut back social isolation and enhance psychological well being.

Enhance the most cancers affected person and abilities.

Improvisational theatre, or improv, is a type of drama remedy that includes video games or creating unscripted conversations with others. A standard improvisation precept, known as “Sure, and…” 1 is when the performer adapts and builds on another person’s story.3-5 When utilizing that talent therapeutically, Improv teaches sufferers communication abilities and reveals them 1 approach to join with others. Consequently, sufferers will be extra empowered to debate their wants with their healthcare crew, rising self-confidence and vanity. Psychological well being and medical outcomes can enhance when sufferers have a voice.4,5

Enchancment can complement the training of consciousness, which permits sufferers to be discovered and attended in time. Studying inventive methods to cope with and address most cancers stress is vital to enhancing total well-being.

Enhance abilities and well being care skilled

Well being care professionals can apply the traditions of drama remedy and enhance their very own relationships with sufferers. The doctor-patient relationship needs to be based mostly on assist, respect and good communication.2 For well being care professionals, the “Sure, and…” precept of improvisation helps them higher hear actively and perceive the affected person’s expertise. When sufferers really feel heard, they’re extra prone to categorical their preferences, perceive their choices and respect therapy.4 The teachings discovered from improv allow professionals to be clever, communicative and within the second.5

Using enchancment strategies permits the well being care skilled to determine a relationship based mostly on cooperation and belief. By being current, partaking, and constructing constructive relationships with sufferers, healthcare professionals have a singular alternative to higher tackle healthcare disparities. Cultural competencies and variety coaching will be mixed with improved practices to higher talk with communities that have well being care inequities.4 Well being care disparities exist in susceptible communities and are influenced by components equivalent to race, ethnicity, sexuality, gender identification, and age, to call a couple of. Well being care professionals can acknowledge these inequities and tackle different obstacles to care. These robust relationships improve psychological well being and therapy outcomes for populations affected by well being disparities.4


The advantages of drama remedy and the teachings discovered in it are 2-fold. Most cancers sufferers see enhancements in psychological well being, communication abilities, and vanity. Likewise, by way of this apply, healthcare professionals develop their empathy abilities and may apply dialogue to higher assist their sufferers.

Marissa Power He’s the Director of Particular Applications in Most cancers.Care.


  1. What’s drama remedy? Drama Remedy Affiliation of North America. Accessed January 22, 2023. https://www.nadta.org/what-is-drama-therapy
  2. Sherrel Z. The medical information it’s essential to find out about drama remedy immediately. Might 27, 2022. Accessed January 22, 2023. https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/drama-therapy.
  3. Krueger Ok, Murphy J, Bink A. Thera-prov: a pilot research of improv for the therapy of hysteria and melancholy. J Psychological Well being.2019;28(6):621-626. doi:10.1080/09638237.2017.1340629
  4. Chin MH. Classes from improv comedy to cut back well being disparities. JAMA Intern Med. 2020; 180(1):5-6. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2019.5930
  5. Phillips L. Sure, and… it may be remedial remedy. Recommendation immediately. September 7, 2021. Accessed January 22, 2023. https://ct.counseling.org/2021/09/yes-and-improv-can-be-therapeutic/

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