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Science Says Crafting Is Good For Your Brain

by Hanna Brooks Olsen
craft & maker, featured

crafting to treat depression

You know making cool stuff is a great way to pass the time, express your creativity — and even make a living. But a study cited by CNN confirms another huge benefit to crafting: Mental health! From CNN:

Crafting can help those who suffer from anxiety, depression or chronic pain, experts say. It may also ease stress, increase happiness and protect the brain from damage caused by aging.

Though there’s not a ton of research on the subject of crafting and your brain (why not? We’re not sure either), there have been multiple studies which link working with your hands in a creative way with feeling more positive.

Knitters, especially, seem to be cheerful folks; According to CNN, one study of over 3,500 knitters found that “81% of respondents with depression reported feeling happy after knitting. More than half reported feeling ‘very happy.'” Previous studies have found similar findings in those who do pottery, cross-stitch, and other work by hand.

Crafting has also been shown to help fight dementia and aid in the treatment of PTSD, CNN reports.

Not sure how to get your craft on (for your health, of course)? We’ve got plenty of new things to try out on our Craft & Maker channel, including courses on crocheting, scrapbooking, and knitting.

Catch Vickie Howell in Knit Maker: Skills & Techniques to hone down those knitting skills.  WATCH NOW!  

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Hanna Brooks Olsen

Hanna Brooks Olsen is a writer and editor for CreativeLive, longtime reporter, and the co-founder of Seattlish. Follow her on Twitter at @mshannabrooks or go to her website for more stuff.