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.
Dr. Aaron T. Beck in the 1960s founded the Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) as a means of treating mental illnesses.
Getting The Addiction Tackling Resources
It takes both people and resources to deal with substance dependency. Drug addiction treatment programs, both outpatient and residential, will help you avoid relapses and stay sober afterwards. Mental health therapists are available to educate you on the essential life techniques to sustain 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. Patients undergoing CBT treatment are taught to recognize the triggers in their minds, emotions, and behaviour that lead to them taking the drugs. This makes it easy to work on recovery.
Apart from addiction, CBT is also used for treating co-occurring disorders such as:
ADD or Attention Deficit Disorder
Various forms of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder [PTSD]
There are many rehab centres that provide CBT and you can find one near you today.
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.
Cognitive behavioural therapists work with patients to identify potentially thoughts that lead to self-destructive or unhealthy behaviours. Automatic thoughts are generally impulsive and often as a result of misconceptions and internal feelings of fear and self-doubt. The abuse of drugs or alcohol is in many cases an attempt to get rid of these negative thoughts.
Being able to isolate these feelings and emotions and recognize what brings them on empowers the addicted person to fight the addiction.
These addiction can be gradually minimised if they address the past experiences and thoughts. Once they can cope with the issues without freaking out, they are then taught how to cultivate healthy habits in place of the substances they were addicted to.
Use Of Cbt In Addiction Treatment
Most users are found to be suffering from deep despair and hopelessness which in the first place were caused by bad or distrustful thoughts.
Someone is bound to start using drugs or be addicted to alcohol if they constantly have negative thoughts and feelings of depression.
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.
How Cbt Works In Helping Patients Overcome Addiction
The false beliefs and insecurity issues that causes substance abuse can be resolved using CBT.
Using techniques that are bound to help the patient up boost moral.
Training the patient on how to express themselves better.
Keys For Controlling Triggers
Know the things that create an urge to use drugs or alcohol.
Abstract oneself from trigger situations whenever it's possible.
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. CBT patients can use the techniques at home, office or join a support group.
Some of the self-help exercises taught in support groups such as SMART - Self Management and Recovery Training incorporate certain aspects of CBT.
Methods Used In Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
There are exercises peculiar to CBT-based treatment for addicted patients.
Some of the exercises are:
This involves dispelling automatic negative thoughts by finding proof that shows these thoughts to be false.
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 objective is to assist them to think in a balanced manner and critically evaluate their thoughts to feel constructive about themselves.
Example "my manager thinks I'm useless." I need to have a drink to feel better" turns into "It's ok to make mistakes, and I will learn from them. I will have a chance to prove my worth to my supervisor by rectifying my mistake. 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.
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: " "If I talk kindly to myself after binge drinking, I'll binge drink less." vs "If I'm hard on myself after binge drinking, I'll binge drink less."
Imagery Based Exposure
During this exercise, patients have to think about a past experience that causes severe negative feelings.
During this moment, they are required to take note of every sight, emotion, sound, thought and impulse.
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. 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 technique that is executed by drawing up a schedule of fun yet healthy activities to provide recreation and breaks from the everyday routine.
The key is to have activities that are uncomplicated and easy to execute while bringing out positive feelings.
Preparing these lovely exercises assists to low negative involuntary feelings and the ensuing desire to drink or abuse drugs.
Example: It will be better for an overworked financial advisor to consider relaxing at his or her desk for 15 minutes every day, rather than indulging in drugs or alcohol on the job. Instead, the break is used to listen to a recently released song from a new music sensation.
How Cognitive-Behavioural Therapies Differ From Other Psychotherapies
As compared to some therapies which do not offer a set of engaging activities, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy will provide an hands-on alternative.
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. The addicts and the therapists will be working with each other to treat the addiction.
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy applies fruitful, action-focused techniques aimed at quick result. Lots of mid length rehabilitation programs that last from 60 to 90 days include CBT techniques to give patients more opportunities to cop? with their problems.
Certain psychoanalytic methods may take many years before showing any tangible results. In sharp contrast, CBT just requires 16 sessions before meaningful results can be seen.
Cognitive behavioural therapy techniques are also very flexible, which makes them well usable for treatment both in a clinic and on outpatient basis, and CBT can be applied both during individual counselling and in groups. There are many addiction treatment clinics and professionals who incorporate CBT in their treatment programs.