Healing power of words
Doctors utilize literature in therapy
In June 2013, doctors in the United Kingdom began prescribing books to depressed patients, effecting a trend in bibliotherapy.
The American Library Association defines bibliotherapy as “the use of books selected on the basis of content in a planned reading program designed to facilitate the recovery of patients suffering from mental illnesses or emotional disturbance.”
The term bibliotherapy was created by the clergyman Samuel Crothers in 1916, but this was not the first time people started to think of books as a way to help with depression. Ancient Greeks described a library as “a healing place for the soul,” and during WWII soldiers would read while recuperating from injuries.
According to the article “Behavioral bibliotherapy: A review of self-help behavior therapy manuals,” studies have shown “that the validation of available self-help behavior therapy is extremely variable at the present time.”
Teachers have started to use the process for younger students in the classroom. The teacher may be able to help the student identify with a character, who is of similar age, facing similar circumstances. This allows the student to release kept-in negative emotions under safe conditions. This helps the student to come up with a solution to their problems with the teacher’s help.
The ALA states “ideally, the process occurs in three phases: personal identification of the reader with a particular character in the recommended work, resulting in psychological catharsis, which leads to rational insight concerning the relevance of solution suggested in the text to the reader’s own experience.”
Though bibliotherapy is still in its infancy, other research has shown positive aspects of reading.
“It could be cathartic, for one, and there is research that exists regarding many positive aspects of reading, especially a good book,” said Daniel Chadborn, a psychology instructor.
Another way in which bibliotherapy would be beneficial is it gives a student dealing with depression a chance to focus their mind on something other than the violence seen on television, giving them a positive outlook on life. They just need to make sure that they are reading a positive, influential book.
“I could only imagine that it could act as a positive way to improve mood, though it may depend on the book and the individual,” said Chadborn. “There would have to be an emphasis on making the reading not assigned or a chore, but something the person can and should enjoy, possibly finding books on their own.”
If you have a friend dealing with depression, recommend a book to read, but be sure to read it first and avoid books with negative topics, such as crime, death, drug-use, abortions and so on.
Also, if you or anyone you know is dealing with depression, mental issues or any other hardships, seek help from the University Counseling Center.
Get Top Stories Delivered Weekly
More The Lion's Roar News Articles
Recent The Lion's Roar News Articles
Discuss This Article
MOST POPULAR THE LION'S ROAR
GET TOP STORIES DELIVERED WEEKLY
FOLLOW OUR NEWSPAPER
LATEST THE LION'S ROAR NEWS
- Lady Lions close out season against Auburn Tigers
- The Last Roar comes to campus for first time
- Rossano connects Plato to the modern world
- Pray for Paris, a Frenchman’s response
- Music fraternity dedicates special concert to veterans
- Alumnus’ ‘The Soldier’s Story’ to be performed
- Supernatural series raises awareness of inhalant abuse
RECENT THE LION'S ROAR CLASSIFIEDS
FROM AROUND THE WEB
- Oleg Frish's Dream Comes True With New Duets Album
- The INs and OUTs of a Hospital Stay
- The Movie Studio Reveals New Opportunities for Indie...
- Brighten Your Holidays With LED Lights
- Tell Congress to Protect Paper Investor Reports
- Climb Stairs Without Hurting Yourself
- Is Your Baby Ready for Chewing?
- Millennials Are Determined to Lessen Their Kids' College...
- Organizar Un Maratón De La Película Star...
- Know Your Drug Costs Before You Leave the Doctor's Office
COLLEGE PRESS RELEASES
- Knowledge Gaps in Vaccination Against Meningococcal Disease
- Five Easy Steps to Own Holiday Shopping on a Budget
- CSUN Secular Student Alliance holds their first meeting
- Application Deadline Near for $100,000 Excellence in Innovation Award
- Voto Latino to Host Event on Climate Change Challenges & Opportunities