Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: How Does CBT Work?

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: How Does CBT Work?

CBT (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy) seeks to change how you think and behave to manage your problems. The goal is to help you break free from negative behavioral patterns and thoughts that keep you trapped in your problems.

CBT is unique because it focuses on addressing current issues rather than past problems. In subsequent sections, we will explore the impact of CBT on your health and lifestyle.

Table Of Contents

What Is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy?

Cognitive-behavioral therapy is a potent form of psychotherapy that helps patients tackle false beliefs that affect their moods and lead to negative behavior. A form of talk therapy, CBT has been used to treat several forms of mental illnesses.

What Does CBT Stand for in Psychology?

A lot of people ask, “what does CBT stand for?” The simple answer is that CBT is a form of psychotherapy that seeks to improve the psyche of an individual using refined therapy techniques. It is a painless and highly effective way to deal with mental health issues. 

Also read – Psychology of Weight Loss

CBT Vs. Psychotherapy 

CBT and psychotherapy have a lot in common. However, there are slight differences. The major difference between them is that CBT is a short-term treatment while psychotherapy is more long-term.

Psychotherapy covers a broad range of options, including CBT, and is reputed for improving mental health.

Types of CBT

Below are some of the types of CBT:

  • Exposure Therapy

First on the list is exposure therapy used to treat obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and specific phobias. This type of CBT therapy helps patients identify their triggers and learn how to avoid them. As part of the control, patients undergoing exposure therapy will be exposed to these anxiety triggers and allowed to confront them. Successful patients can then be discharged.

  • Exposure and Response Prevention

Exposure and response prevention, or ERP, is a form of CBT exposure therapy where therapists help you confront your fears and triggers. In such a controlled environment, patients learn to resist the urge to flee. ERP is great for managing the symptoms of OCD.

  • Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction

Mindfulness-based stress reduction, also known as mindfulness-based cognitive therapy, is a form of CBT that uses trusted mindfulness techniques to affect behavioral changes. 

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: What to Expect

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: What to Expect

You can expect to have a CBT session at least once a week. You will be required to take 5-20 sessions in all, with each session typically lasting 30-60 minutes. 

First Session

During your first session, your therapist will work with you to determine your feelings and the effects these have on your thoughts and behaviors. After the talking session, your therapist will provide you with clarity on the areas you can change and give you some practice exercises to help you make these changes. 

Subsequent Sessions

During subsequent sessions, your therapist will evaluate your progress and point out other areas of improvement. At the end of the sessions, you will have learned how to manage your issues and stop them from negatively affecting your life. 

Also read: How to Meditate for Weight Loss

How to Prepare for a CBT Session

Now that you have decided to try out cognitive behavioral therapy, here’s how you can prepare.

Get a Therapist

Your journey starts with finding a great therapist. You can get a referral from your health insurance, doctor, and other trusted sources. 

Get Ready for the Cost

CBT sessions will set you back a few bucks, so get ready to cover it. Some health insurance plans only cover limited sessions a year. So, it is wise to discuss rates and preferred payment options early on and make sure you can afford it.

Be Open

The essence of CBT sessions is to get things off your chest, so come with an open mind and be ready to talk about your feelings. You can discuss each session with your therapist to get a sense of your progress.

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What are the Benefits of CBT?

Cognitive-behavioral therapy is a great way to tackle mental health problems. It focuses on managing your response to your current issues. Here are some of the benefits of CBT:

  • It helps manage mental health disorders like depression, anxiety disorders, PTSD, and phobias
  • Aids the prevention of mental health relapse
  • It helps you learn how to manage stressful life events
  • It helps you deal with loss, grief, or emotional trauma
  • It helps teach you better ways to communicate with others

Does Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Treat Depression?

Yes, cognitive behavioral therapy is one of the proven therapeutic methods of treating and managing mental health conditions, including depression. CBT helps patients discover their triggers for depression and deal with them.

Final Thoughts

CBT is great for sorting through your current feelings and helping you improve your behavior. The sessions help you work through your feelings and improve your mental health. Take the quiz today to get started.

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