Boosting Vaccine Confidence With the Arts The rapid development of safe and effective vaccines against the novel coronavirus is a remarkable feat of scientific achievement. And it’s our best shot for getting through a global pandemic. But having the vaccine is not enough if not everyone is confident enough to take it. As of September 2021, roughly 180 million Americans are […] Read More More Than Words: Why Poetry is Good for Our Health “Let the globe, if nothing else, say this is true: That even as we grieved, we grew That even as we hurt, we hoped That even as we tired, we tried That we’ll forever be tied together, victorious” Amanda Gorman, the 2017 National Youth Poet Laureate, spoke these powerful words at the 2020 presidential inauguration […] Read More The Art of Nostalgia: Using the Past for Relief in the Present Pandemic When the pandemic put me in lockdown, I decided to make use of extra time at home by sorting through boxes of memorabilia in my closet. My goal: throw stuff out and reduce clutter. But as I blew the dust off old family photos, concert ticket stubs, baseball cards and playbills, I enjoyed a fringe […] Read More How Video Games Can Be a Healthy Escape During Lockdown In the middle of lockdown, I was on an island fishing with my girlfriend. After selling our catch at the local store, we took an impromptu date to the museum and aquarium, admiring their collections. And, seeing as we were the only ones there (save for one sleepy museum attendant), we snapped an endless stream […] Read More Arts in the Aftermath: Helping Kids Heal From Natural Disasters As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to spread, natural disasters have further compounded the disruption to the lives of families and children across the United States. During one of the worst fire seasons on record in the West, a series of major wildfires burned down thousands of homes and millions of acres of land, displacing hundreds […] Read More Why Arts Education Matters in the Age of COVID-19 When class resumed the day after Labor Day for Jazz Dance Level I at Towson University’s Community Dance Center, no children filled the room, stretching in front of the floor-to-ceiling mirrors. No Duke Ellington or Billie Holliday blared from the speakers. No parents chatted idly in the lounge. Instead, children and teachers—holed up in their […] Read More The Art of Coping with Survivor’s Guilt Losing a loved one is one of the most tragic experiences we can go through, an experience that has become all too common during the COVID-19 pandemic. The resulting grief and heartbreak have caused an epidemic within the pandemic—a surge in survivor’s guilt. Survivor’s guilt is the lingering feeling that our own survival, or faring […] Read More Just Dance: A Prescription for Mental Wellbeing In a village on the east coast of China, a farming couple and their “rural-style shuffle dance” has gone viral on TikTok. Their dancing is joyful and upbeat, sometimes taking place in front of fields of corn or grazing cows. And it has been therapeutic. The husband, Fan Deduo, had fallen into a depression following […] Read More PTSD and the Arts: A Path to Healing Our Healers More than two months into the pandemic, experts are raising concerns over the long-term mental health implications for healthcare and other frontline workers. Behind the hospital ward weddings, standing ovations and donated meals, there are thousands of doctors, nurses and paramedics who are exhausted, anxious and traumatized by their experiences caring for those with COVID-19. […] Read More Why a Dose of Nature Is Essential to Your Mental Health When was the last time you went out and soaked up some nature? Even in pre-pandemic times, most American adults spent 93% of their time indoors. Now, with social distancing requirements in place, the time we spend at home and inside has only increased. But during this stressful time, our connection to nature is more […] Read More More → Join the neuroaesthetics conversation. Subscribe here.