Unmasking Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
CBT is a method used to treat mental illnesses and addiction by addressing negative thoughts and feelings.
Cognitive behavioural therapy, or CBT, is a method of psychological and psychiatric counselling invented by Dr. AAron T. Beck in the 1960s.
Get Necessary Resources To Overcome Addiction
It takes both people and resources to deal with substance dependency. Outpatient or Inpatient addiction treatment programs will help you achieve sobriety and keep from relapsing. You can also learn the skills you need to stay sober from available psychological counsellors.
Make adjustments now by getting a suitable medical facility.
Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) addresses the problem areas of thoughts and behaviour resulting from drug addiction.
Many of the groups and rehabs are utilising Cognitive behavioural therapy in the recovery processes. 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.
Some of the other behaviours that can be eliminated aside from dependency on drugs include
- Anxiety of various kinds
- Various forms of Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD)
- Bipolar disorder
- Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
- Eating disorders
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
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How Cognitive Behavioural Therapy Helps
CBT recognizes that many behaviours and feeling are dangerous and make no sense. The feelings and behaviours of people could be coming as a direct result from past experiences and factors related to the environment.
It is the job of counsellors to help recovering addicts identify their negative feelings and actions, which are also known as "automatic thoughts." Involuntary ideas from a sudden urge and frequently emanates from a mistaken belief and a subconscious way of thinking based on low esteem 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 addiction can also be eliminated when these thoughts are substituted with new thought.
Dependency Treatment And Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
Most users are found to be suffering from deep despair and hopelessness which in the first place were caused by bad or distrustful thoughts.
What this says is dark thoughts have a higher possibility of making a person start abusing substances.
It may be hard for a person trying to stop drug addiction to do so when they are in the same environment that led them to that behaviour in the first place. There are a couple of ways that these triggers can be prevented from causing relapse.
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.
- Strengthen the patient with better ways of self-motivation.
- CBT can show the recovering user how to communicate better.
How To Control The Triggers
- Identify the circumstances which can lead to the use of drugs and alcohol.
- Avoid The Triggers
- This involves distancing yourself from your triggers as much as possible.
- 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. CBT patients can use the techniques at home, office or join a support group.
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.
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy Methods
To help a user to recover, there are special methods that are utilized in CBT.
Some of these practices are
- Thought Records
- Recovering addicts are required to examine their automatic negative thoughts and to look for objective evidence either supporting or disproving the thoughts.
- They are required to list the evidence in favour of or against the automatic thoughts and indulge in a comparison and a contrast to the thoughts.
- The aim is to help them think positive, productive thoughts.
For example, a person may think that a supervisor at work doesn't think highly of them. I feel better when I drink, I'll take a drink right now " becomes " it is okay to make mistakes as now I know what not to do. If I learn from my mistakes and heed my manager's advice, she will appreciate it. This will lead them to realize that they don't need alcohol to feel better.
- Behavioural Experiments
- Here the exercises involve comparing negative thoughts and positive thoughts to see which influence good behaviour more.
- One person may react better when they self-criticize while another will do great when they self-motivated.
- Behavioural experiments help individuals figure out whether they are self-motivators or self-critics.
Example "when I criticize myself after indulging in too much drink, I drink less" vs. "when I encourage myself that I am better off without so much drinking, I drink less."
- Imagery Based Exposure
- 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.
- Regularly re-enacting that moment in their minds, the patient can deal with the pain and nervousness brought about by the memory.
Example Painful childhood memories haunt an individual who constantly focuses on them. 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.
- Schedule for Pleasant Activities
- This is a practice involving creating a healthy weekly list, entertaining practices to halt an individual's daily activities.
- The tasks included should encourage positive emotions while being uncomplicated and easy to perform.
- 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 In the place of drinking or indulging in drugs while working, a worn-out financial advisor unwinds at his desk for quarter an hour daily. Instead, during this time he enjoys a song from the singer he likes very much.
Difference Between Other Therapies And Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy take a more practical approach to therapy as compared to other methods.
Addicts in treatment are expected to go beyond just talking to the therapist during the CBT sitting and the therapist is not just a passive listener. In its place, addiction victims and therapists work collectively to overcome dependency.
The foundation of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy focuses on action-based treatment, which will be rapid. CBT has become a standard part of many long term rehab programs since they provide the patients with ways of coping.
It may takes years to see tangible results with most psychotherapy methods. Positive results in CBT may be visible in as little as sixteen sessions.
CBT therapy can be adapted to make it effective in outpatient or inpatient programs as well as in counselling sessions for groups or an individual. CBT is a regular part of the treatment program as far as many rehab centres and addiction specialists are concerned.