Cognitive Behavioural Therapy And Understanding It
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.
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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.
Many of the groups and rehabs are utilising Cognitive behavioural therapy in the recovery processes. 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 addiction patients also have other issues concurrently occurring with the addiction problems like
- Various forms of Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD)
- Various forms of bipolar disorder
- OCD or Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
- Eating disorders
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
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How Cbt Works
Many of the things we do or feel that harm us are not actually rational and CBT can help us to know this. Such feelings and behaviours may be caused by either environmental effect or experiences from the past.
With the help of cognitive behavioural therapists, recovering addicts can fetch out negative "automatic thoughts" of their own. A person's feelings play a very big part in the life of a person and their addiction. Trying to suppress the pain inflicted by these experiences people self-medicate with alcohol and drugs.
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.
Facing these sensitive areas often leads a patient to get over the acute pain they cause. The addicts then get a fresh opportunity to learn positive behaviours in order to replace their addiction for alcohol or drugs.
The Role Of Cbt In Treating 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.
What this says is dark thoughts have a higher possibility of making a person start abusing substances.
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. There are a couple of ways that these triggers can be prevented from causing relapse.
Cbt Helps Patients To Get Past Drug Addiction And Alcoholism By
- The false beliefs and insecurity issues that causes substance abuse can be resolved using CBT.
- To improve moods, CBT can provide tools that the recovering user can employ on their own.
- Training people how to speak up about their feelings to others.
Skills For Managing Triggers
- Know Them (recognize)
- Identify the circumstances which can lead to the use of drugs and alcohol.
- Avoid The Triggers
- Try as much as possible to get away from these trigger situations.
- Cope With Triggers
- This involves dealing with the thoughts and feelings that cause you to abuse the substance using methods learnt in CBT.
You can practice CBT behaviour techniques anywhere and everywhere. Patients can do a lot of CBT exercises all by themselves - at a group meeting and at home.
To encourage people to stay sober, various support groups such as SMART (Self-Management and Recovery Training) program also make use of CBT when creating their self-help exercises.
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy Practices
Therapists that practice CBT use special exercises to facilitate addiction recovery.
CBT methods that are important in treating addiction include
- Though Records
- The patients are encouraged to stop and evaluate their thoughts see if they are worth keeping them or if they are better discarded.
- The participants are supposed to evaluate their thoughts critically to see the downsides it is causing to their lives.
- The objective is to assist them to think in a balanced manner and critically evaluate their thoughts to feel constructive about themselves.
An example is "My supervisor thinks and worthless. I need to have a drink to feel better' becomes 'it's normal to commit mistakes, and I can learn from the example. I will have a chance to prove my worth to my supervisor by rectifying my mistake. 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.
- Some people can better judge themselves while others can complement themselves.
- Behavioural experiments help individuals figure out whether they are self-motivators or self-critics.
For example, some people may drink less if they criticize themselves more while others may drink less if they encourage themselves more.
- Imagery Based Exposure Technique
- Here, the patients are encouraged to remember something bad that happened before that causes them to feel terrible.
- The person then carefully notes what they were seeing, hearing, feeling and thinking in that 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. Everything they went through at that time is clear as day to them. The consistent exposure to his past begins to cause him less pain and reduces the requirement to self-medicate with the use of alcohol or drugs.
- Schedule for Pleasant Activities
- 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.
- All the activities on the list should be easy to do, simple, and trigger positive emotions.
- Preparing these lovely exercises assists to low negative involuntary feelings and the ensuing desire to drink or abuse drugs.
Example An accountant who is feeling overworked could schedule a few minutes of relaxation everyday during his work hours instead of drinking while working. He or she can begin to use the extra time at their desk to enjoy some new music from a melodious artist.
How Cbt Or Cognitive Behavioural Therapy Varies From Other Therapies
As compared to some therapies which do not offer a set of engaging activities, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy will provide an hands-on alternative.
The CBT sessions aren't simply about the therapist quietly listening while the patient goes on and on about their lives. Both the therapist and the patient are actively involved in the therapy session and work together.
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.
Some kinds of psychotherapy can take years until they produce a reliable result. Just sixteen sessions of CBT is often enough to obtain considerable improvement.
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. A lot of rehabilitation facilities and addiction therapists use CBT as a part of their treatment programs.