Unmasking Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) is a treatment for psychological problems that seeks to address the thinking or behaviour patterns of a person with a mental health condition.
A classification of mental health counselling is cognitive-behavioural therapy which was founded in the 1960s by Dr. AAron T. Beck.
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It takes both people and resources to deal with substance dependency. Outpatient and inpatient substance addiction treatment may assist you to regain your sobriety and avoid reverting to drug use. There are mental health specialists on hand to help you learn life skills that will keep you on the path to recovery.
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Cognitive-Behavioural therapy is helpful to people to address any problematic thoughts and feelings which they could have in order to overcome addiction.
Today, cognitive behavioural therapy is widely used to treat addictions. CBT trains recovering addicts to find connections between their feelings, thoughts, and actions and increase their awareness of how these things affect their recovery.
Some of the other behaviours that can be eliminated aside from dependency on drugs include
- Anxiety of various kinds
- Attention Deficit Disorder [ADD]
- Various forms of bipolar disorder
- Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
- Eating disorders
- PTSD or Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
If you suffer from addiction or any of those issues listed, please look for a CBT treatment facility for help.
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How Cognitive Behavioural Therapy Helps
Many harmful actions and emotions which people indulge in do not fall in the rational or the logical category and these actions can be identified by cognitive-behavioural therapy. Such feelings and behaviours may be caused by either environmental effect or experiences from the past.
Cognitive behavioural therapists work with patients to identify potentially thoughts that lead to self-destructive or unhealthy behaviours. A person's feelings play a very big part in the life of a person and their addiction. People start to use some of the rugs in an effort to cover up these thoughts.
A person can stop their over dependency on drugs if they identify the thoughts and emotions that lead them to abuse drugs or behaviour in a certain way.
It has also been noticed that making an attempt to visit the painful memories it becomes possible for recovering addicts to reduce the pain which is caused by them. The positive behaviours that are learnt through CBT can thereafter be used instead of using drugs or alcohol.
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy And Treatment For Addiction
Whenever there is an addiction, there is usually another mental issue such as depression and anxiety disorders and these usually stem from automatic negative thoughts.
A person may be more likely to abuse alcohol or drugs when experiencing these negative thoughts.
One of the main things that prevent people from staying clean are triggers and these are things, situations or people that bring about a strong urge to use. The National Institute On Drug Abuse has mentioned that help can be received by recovering addicts from cognitive-behavioural therapy to deal with the triggers which result in the cravings.
How Cbt Works In Helping Patients Overcome Addiction
- Helping to dispel my persuasions and feeling of insecurity, which result in substance abuse, from the patient's mind.
- Providing DIY techniques to lift the patients' spirits.
- CBT can show the recovering user how to communicate better.
Keys For Controlling Triggers
- Identify which factor provokes taking drugs or drinking alcohol.
- Try as much as possible to get away from these trigger situations.
- The techniques of getting rid of these feeling you have learnt from CBT will come in handy in this place.
Even when outside the treatment centre, you can still practice the methods learnt in CBT. Recovering addicts do not need to visit a specialist for advice but can indulge in several CBT exercises by themselves either from home or in a group setting.
The techniques of CBT are also being used in the SMART programs and other self help groups on addiction.
Cbt Therapy Principles
Therapists that practice CBT use special exercises to facilitate addiction recovery.
Some of the exercises are
- Thought Records
- One way to overcome these behaviour is keeping in check your thoughts in order to avoid negative thinking.
- The patients make a list of advantages and disadvantages of keeping or discarding the thoughts.
- This helps them eliminate the bad thoughts and stick with the good thoughts.
An example is "My supervisor thinks and worthless. I need to have a drink to feel better" turns into "It's ok to make mistakes, and I will learn from them. My supervisor may in fact think highly of me for being able to learn from my mistakes. This will lead them to realize that they don't need alcohol to feel better.
- Behavioural Experiments
- These exercises are helpful in contrasting negative thoughts with the positive ones to understand which one is better effective for changing behaviour.
- It is well-known that some people respond better to self-kindness while others could display better responses to self-criticism.
- The whole point of behavioural experiments is in finding out what works best for the particular individual.
Example "I'm likely to binge drink less if I am hard on myself during and after the binge drinking" vs. "I'll probably have fewer drinks if I am talking to myself kindly after the session of binge drinking."
- Imagery Based Exposure
- During this exercise, patients have to think about a past experience that causes severe negative feelings.
- They write down every experience at that moment including sight, sound, emotion, thought and the impulse of the moment.
- Regularly re-enacting that moment in their minds, the patient can deal with the pain and nervousness brought about by the memory.
Example A difficult childhood memory is the focus of a young man's thoughts. He replays it in his mind remembering every feeling and detail of the event. The more he replays it in his mind, the less painful it is and this leads to a lower need to indulge in alcohol and drugs as a way of self medication.
- The Schedule of Pleasant Activities
- This is a practice involving creating a healthy weekly list, entertaining practices to halt an individual's daily activities.
- These are activities that are designed to elicit positive feelings and are usually easy to do.
- The need to use drugs or alcohol can be reduced with the help of these activities since they will help to curb the negative thoughts that tend to creep up automatically.
Example A financial advisor who works a lot, finds fifteen minutes every day to relax at his desk instead of drinking alcohol or using drugs at work. He utilises that moment to get and appreciate a fresh song from a new singer.
What Is The Difference Between Cbt Vs Other Kinds Of Psychotherapy
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is more likeable than many other methods of therapy.
The addicts who are recovering can have an active session with their therapists who will be willing to listen not just passively. Both the therapist and the patient are actively involved in the therapy session and work together.
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy applies fruitful, action-focused techniques aimed at quick result. CBT has become a standard part of many long term rehab programs since they provide the patients with ways of coping.
It has been observed that some techniques of psychotherapy can take many years before a strong impact is seen. More often than not, CBT needs 16 meetings to deliver significant results.
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy can be adapted to make it effective during inpatient and outpatient sessions, along with individual and group counselling environments. There are many addiction treatment clinics and professionals who incorporate CBT in their treatment programs.