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 started Cognitive Behavioural Therapy in the 60s which is a branch of mental health counselling.
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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.
Nowadays, CBT has become a common part of treating addictions. CBT educates recovering addicts to establish connections between their thoughts, feelings and actions and to increase awareness about how these matters can have an impact on recovery.
Some of the other behaviours that can be eliminated aside from dependency on drugs include:
Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD)
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
PTSD or Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
There are many rehab centres that provide CBT and you can find one near you today.
Lack of proper reason or sense is what causes people to behaviour in a certain tragic way and this explanation is according to Cognitive Behavioural therapy. The feelings and behaviours of people could be coming as a direct result from past experiences and factors related to the environment.
With the help of cognitive behavioural therapists, recovering addicts can fetch out negative "automatic thoughts" of their own. 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. It has been observed that many people look forward to be self-medicating themselves to overcome the painful thoughts and feelings with the help of alcohol or by abusing substances.
A person may be better able to deal with their addiction if they know what causes them to feel as they do and how these emotions and behaviours lead to the use of a drug or alcohol.
The pain caused by certain experiences may be lessened if these events are revisited often and addressed. The positive behaviours that are learnt through CBT can thereafter be used instead of using drugs or alcohol.
Use Of Cbt In Addiction Treatment
It is Automatic negative thoughts that are often the major cause of various depressions and anxiety disorders, which commonly occur together with addiction.
It means that automatic thoughts can make a person more likely to take drugs and drink alcohol.
How to identify what brings on the urge for the drug or alcohol on a day to day basis. There are three ways in which CBT can help recovering users deal with triggers according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse.
Cbt Helps Patients To Get Past Drug Addiction And Alcoholism By
Helping to dispel my persuasions and feeling of insecurity, which result in substance abuse, from the patient's mind.
To improve moods, CBT can provide tools that the recovering user can employ on their own.
Carrying out training on effective communication skills.
How To Control The Triggers
Learn to identify what makes you want to take drugs or drink.
Avoid The Triggers
This involves distancing yourself from your triggers as much as possible.
Using CBT techniques, examine and mitigate emotions and thoughts that provoke substance use.
You can practice CBT behaviour techniques anywhere and everywhere. 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.
Cbt Therapy Principles
In order to help with addiction recovery cognitive behavioural therapists are known to utilise specific exercises.
CBT methods that are important in treating addiction include:
This involves dispelling automatic negative thoughts by finding proof that shows these thoughts to be false.
They write down of pros and cons of their automatic thoughts to compare and set up the former against the latter.
The idea is that by critically evaluating your thoughts, you will be able to have thoughts that are less harsh and are more rational.
For example: "My boss thinks I'm worthless. 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. I will have a chance to prove my worth to my supervisor by rectifying my mistake. I don't need any alcohol to bolster my self-esteem."
By evaluating these thoughts, one gets to understand the better behaviours to follow.
Where some people may respond to self-criticism, others may prefer self-kindness.
Behavioural experiments are just about understanding what works best for a particular individual to a situation.
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."
Creating Images In Your Mind
Here, the patients are encouraged to remember something bad that happened before that causes them to feel terrible.
This will involve assessing all the features such as feelings and the responses they had to that particular feeling.
The anxiousness caused by certain negative experiences can be lessened by going over these experiences over and over.
Example: A person revisits a traumatic event from their childhood. He recollects every information and feeling during that time. 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.
These activities must be modest and stress-free while at the same time inspiring constructive feelings.
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: A financial advisor working in a high stress environment can take 15 minutes off the job to do something relaxing instead of turning to alcohol or drugs when overwhelmed. He utilises that moment to get and appreciate a fresh song from a new singer.
The Difference Between Cognitive Behavioural Therapy And Other Psychotherapies
While others therapies may be less hands-on, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy provides an approach that is much more attentive.
At CBT sessions, recovering addicts do not just talk, and their therapists do not just listen passively to patients. The therapist and addict are instead expected to treat the addiction by working hand in hand.
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy applies fruitful, action-focused techniques aimed at quick result. Most 60 to 90 day rehab programs incorporate CBT to give individuals instant ways of 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.
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.