A Mental Health Clinic Explains: What is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy?

March 19, 2021

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, CBT for short, is a form of talking therapy used to treat various mental health conditions. The treatment has proven effective at helping individuals identify and mend negative thought patterns to encourage healthier behavior.

CBT helps patients to break down and examine problems that may be overwhelming them, making it possible to trace the root causes of the issues in patients’ thinking patterns.

At Outreach Recovery, it’s one of the methods we use to help patients achieve better mental health and more stable lives.

If you’re struggling with a mental illness, consider visiting one of our mental health clinics near you. Cognitive behavioral therapy may be an effective part of ensuring a long-lasting recovery

In the meantime, here’s more information about CBT.

How does Cognitive Behavioral Therapy work?

The concept behind CBT is that your thoughts, feelings, and physical sensations influence each other. If you develop negative thought patterns, you become more vulnerable to anxiety, depression, substance abuse, and self-destructive habits.

CBT also aims to help you break down problems you may be facing in life, breaking them into smaller issues so you can manage them with greater control.

This treatment also shows you how to change any negative thinking patterns you may have developed. Doing so makes you less susceptible to poor mental health and impulsive behavior.

Unlike other forms of talking therapy, CBT focuses on your current problems as opposed to traumatic events you may have gone through in the past. It equips you with practical ways to address day-to-day issues and improve your state of mind.

What conditions is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy effective at treating?

CBT is a flexible form of therapy, which is why it’s often used to help patients dealing with an extensive range of mental health conditions. These include:

  • Various forms of anxiety
  • Depression
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Eating disorders
  • PTSD
  • Panic disorder
  • OCD
  • Borderline personality disorder

This type of therapy is also used to help patients dealing with co-occurring disorders and addiction, including those struggling with opioid abuse in some cases.

What happens during CBT sessions?

If you start receiving cognitive behavioral therapy, you will have a session with a therapist either once a week or every two weeks. The sessions tend to last between half an hour and an hour.

Depending on the severity of your mental illness or addiction, your course of treatment can include anywhere from five to 20 sessions.

During each meeting with your therapist, you break down your problems into the thoughts that are contributing to them, the physical feelings you’re experiencing, and the actions you’re taking in response.

You will also determine the collective effect that each of those different components of your issues is having on your life.

Your therapist then helps you to work out practical ways to change your unhelpful thoughts, making it easier to also change your behaviors.

The goal of CBT sessions is to teach you to apply the lessons and tools you receive in therapy in your daily life.

Why CBT might be the right treatment for you

Depending on the severity of your addiction or mental illness, CBT can be used alone or with other forms of therapy to increase the likelihood of long-term recovery.

Its advantages include the fact that it can be completed in a relatively shorter time than other forms of therapy, with similarly effective results. And you can receive this form of treatment through different formats, including group settings and telemedicine.

Crucially, CBT teaches you useful strategies that help you become less prone to compulsive negative thoughts.

Make a long-lasting recovery with CBT from a mental health clinic near you

If you’re struggling with your mental health, addiction, or both, CBT is one of the most effective therapy treatments you can receive. Outreach Recovery treatment centres are available throughout the mid-Atlantic area. Call us today at 800-217-6407 to take the first step toward recovery.

Patient receives cognitive behavioral therapy at a mental health clinic.