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Cognitive Behavioural Therapy As A Treatment

Unmasking Cognitive Behavioural Therapy

The problem of treating addiction and mental illness, which can be a result of unhealthy thoughts and feelings can be addressed by cognitive-behavioural therapy.

In the 1960s Dr. Aaron T. Beck founded a type of mental health counselling known as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy.


Get Necessary Resources To Overcome Addiction

It takes both people and resources to deal with substance dependency. You would be able to become sober and avoid the chances of a relapse by using inpatient and outpatient drug addiction treatment centres. In order to maintain the skills that are required along with the recovery you can get help from mental health counsellors.

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They can get over any form of addiction by changing their mentality about it.


CBT is now an internationally accepted mode of treatment for addictions. Through CBT, the patients are shown how to connect their actions to their thoughts and feelings so they can be aware of how these factors are affecting their recovery.

Along with addictions, CBT also facilitates treating various co-occurring disorders, such as the following:

  • Nervousness
  • Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD)
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Obsessive Compulsive Disorder [OCD]
  • Loss of appetite
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

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 Does Cbt Work

Many of the things we do or feel that harm us are not actually rational and CBT can help us to know this. The feelings and behaviours of people could be coming as a direct result from past experiences and factors related to the environment.

Cognitive behavioural therapists work with patients to identify potentially thoughts that lead to self-destructive or unhealthy behaviours. An automatic thought is impulse-based; it often comes from misrepresentations and internally generated feelings such as self-doubt and fear. Trying to suppress the pain inflicted by these experiences people self-medicate with alcohol and drugs.


Being able to isolate these feelings and emotions and recognize what brings them on empowers the addicted person to fight the addiction.

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 addicts then get a fresh opportunity to learn positive behaviours in order to replace their addiction for alcohol or drugs.


Treatment For Addiction And Cognitive Behavioural Therapy

The root causes of depression and anxiety which are common among people, and are co-occurring disorders with addiction emanate from the automatic thoughts which have imbibed themselves within the individual.

Someone is bound to start using drugs or be addicted to alcohol if they constantly have negative thoughts and feelings of depression.

Triggers - certain situations that provoke, i.e. "trigger", cravings for substance during the day - prevent many addicts from living a sober life. Based on the National Institute on Drug Abuse, CBT employs three keys to help those battling addiction resist triggers.


How Cbt Works In Helping Patients Overcome Addiction

  • Aids the patient to take control of their life, rejecting past thoughts and beliefs that trigger low self-esteem and feelings of rejection.
  • Providing DIY techniques to lift the patients' spirits.
  • Training people how to speak up about their feelings to others.

Skills For Managing Triggers

  • Identification
  • You need to recognise the things that make you start using the drugs.
  • Avoid
  • This involves distancing yourself from your triggers as much as possible.
  • Manage
  • Using CBT techniques, examine and mitigate emotions and thoughts that provoke substance use.

Patients can well practice CBT techniques even at the places other than the therapist's office. 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.

Support groups for addiction such as Self-Management And Recovery Training [SMART] are also incorporating CBT principles within their self-help exercises as an encouragement for continued sobriety.


Techniques Applied In Cognitive Behavioural Therapy

To help a user to recover, there are special methods that are utilized in CBT.

Some of these practices are:

  • Though Records
  • One way to overcome these behaviour is keeping in check your thoughts in order to avoid negative thinking.
  • They write down of pros and cons of their automatic thoughts to compare and set up the former against the latter.
  • The aim is to help people switch to more balanced and less rough thoughts by taking stock of what they are thinking.

For example, a person may think that a supervisor at work doesn't think highly of them. For that, I need to use alcohol to get over this feeling "can be changed to " I accept my mistake and will rectify it next time. If I learn from my mistakes and heed my manager's advice, she will appreciate it. I can change without having to use alcohol."

  • CBT 'Behavioural Experiments' Technique
  • Here the exercises involve comparing negative thoughts and positive thoughts to see which influence good behaviour more.
  • It is well-known that some people respond better to self-kindness while others could display better responses to self-criticism.
  • One needs to identify the behaviours that work best with them.

For example: "If I am harsh to myself after drinking to excess, I'll drink less" vs. "If I am kind to myself after drinking to excess, I will drink less."

  • Imagery Based Exposure Technique
  • The people can overcome their feelings by thinking of a past experience that was unpleasant.
  • They write down every experience at that moment including sight, sound, emotion, thought and the impulse of the moment.
  • The anxiousness caused by certain negative experiences can be lessened by going over these experiences over and over.

Example: A young man emphasises on uncomfortable memories of his childhood. He presently recalls every detail and emotion of the particular moment. Eventually, repeatedly remembering this episode gives him less pain, and he doesn't feel the need to take drugs or drink alcohol to ease this pain.

  • Pleasant Activity Program
  • This is a technique that is executed by drawing up a schedule of fun yet healthy activities to provide recreation and breaks from the everyday routine.
  • The tasks included should encourage positive emotions while being uncomplicated and easy to perform.
  • Enlisting - and carrying out - these activities helps patients avoid negative automatic thoughts, so these people do not need to drink or take drugs for this purpose anymore.

Example: An accountant who is feeling overworked could schedule a few minutes of relaxation everyday during his work hours instead of drinking while working. Instead, during this time he enjoys a song from the singer he likes very much.


How Cbt Or Cognitive Behavioural Therapy Varies From Other Therapies

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is more likeable than many other methods of therapy.

At CBT sessions, recovering addicts do not just talk, and their therapists do not just listen passively to patients. Both the therapist and the patient are actively involved in the therapy session and work together.

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is based on actions and faster recovery. Most of the 60 - 90 day rehab programs have CBT as a component that equips addicts with immediate techniques to help in coping.

Other psychotherapy approaches could take up to a number of years to produce results. In sharp contrast, CBT just requires 16 sessions before meaningful results can be seen.

Due to it's highly adaptable nature, CBT is used in both private and group counselling and it is also used in residential and non-residential rehab programs. Numerous therapists and addiction treatment centres are commonly including CBT along with the recovery plans which are offered by them.