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Cognitive Behavioural Therapy Against Addictions

Knowledge Of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy

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.

A classification of mental health counselling is cognitive-behavioural therapy which was founded in the 1960s by Dr. Aaron T. Beck.


Get The Resources You Need To Overcome Dependency

Defeating addiction calls for input from many people and the deployment of a lot of resources. Outpatient or Inpatient addiction treatment programs will help you achieve sobriety and keep from relapsing. You can also learn the skills you need to stay sober from available psychological counsellors.

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They can get over any form of addiction by changing their mentality about it.


CBT is now an internationally accepted mode of treatment for 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:

  • State of panic
  • Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD)
  • Bipolar disorder
  • OCD or Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
  • Eating disorders
  • Various forms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

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How Cbt Works

CBT clearly shows that a good deal of destructive emotions and actions are neither reasonable nor logical. The nature of the place where a person is living and even their history may play a part in their behaviour.

The patients can easily get to know the thoughts that are turning them to drug abuse through the help of the therapists. Automatic thoughts are generally impulsive and often as a result of misconceptions and internal feelings of fear and self-doubt. 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.


Addicts find it easier to overcome their addiction when they begin to understand why they are acting or feeling in a certain manner and how their feelings and actions are leading them to the use of prohibited substances.

The pain caused by certain experiences may be lessened if these events are revisited often and addressed. The addicts then get a fresh opportunity to learn positive behaviours in order to replace their addiction for alcohol or drugs.


Use Of Cbt In Addiction Treatment

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.

This clearly indicates that the automatic thoughts within the mind can make an individual susceptible to drug abuse and alcoholism as well.

It may be hard for a person trying to stop drug addiction to do so when they are in the same environment that led them to that behaviour in the first place. Based on the National Institute on Drug Abuse, CBT employs three keys to help those battling addiction resist triggers.


Alcoholism And Other Drugs Can Be Eliminated By Cbt Including

  • 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.
  • CBT can show the recovering user how to communicate better.

How To Control The Triggers

  • Recognize Triggers In Time
  • Identify which factor provokes taking drugs or drinking alcohol.
  • Avoid
  • Abstract oneself from trigger situations whenever it's possible.
  • Cope
  • Apply the CBT skills you have learned to sort through your thoughts and emotions to beat the urge to indulge.

You don't have to be at the centres to try using the CBT techniques of overcoming addiction. Engaging with others can help you practice some of the things that you learn at CBT.

The techniques of CBT are also being used in the SMART programs and other self help groups on addiction.


Techniques Applied In Cognitive Behavioural Therapy

There are exercises peculiar to CBT-based treatment for addicted patients.

CBT methods that are important in treating addiction include:

  • Thought Records
  • Recovering addicts are required to examine their automatic negative thoughts and to look for objective evidence either supporting or disproving the thoughts.
  • The patients make a list of advantages and disadvantages of keeping or discarding the thoughts.
  • This helps them eliminate the bad thoughts and stick with the good thoughts.

Example: "My manager thinks I'm useless." For that, I need to use alcohol to get over this feeling "can be changed to " I accept my mistake and will rectify it next time. I will have a chance to prove my worth to my supervisor by rectifying my mistake. I do not need alcohol to get a better feeling of myself.

  • Behavioural Experiments
  • To see the one that has a greater effect on behaviour, the effects of positive thoughts can be compared to those of negative ones.
  • Some people can better judge themselves while others can complement themselves.
  • These experiments are useful in finding out what causes an individual to improve their behaviour.

Example "I'm likely to binge drink less if I am hard on myself during and after the binge drinking" vs. "I'll probably have fewer drinks if I am talking to myself kindly after the session of binge drinking."

  • Imagery Based Exposure
  • This exercise requires recovering addicts to think about a memory that can instigate powerful negative feelings.
  • They write down every experience at that moment including sight, sound, emotion, thought and the impulse of the moment.
  • Regularly re-enacting that moment in their minds, the patient can deal with the pain and nervousness brought about by the memory.

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 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.

  • Comfortable Activity Plan
  • This is a practice involving creating a healthy weekly list, entertaining practices to halt an individual's daily activities.
  • These activities must be modest and stress-free while at the same time inspiring constructive feelings.
  • Planning the positive activities contributes to the reduction of negative feelings being generated and a resultant urge to indulge in drinking or drug use.

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, during this time he enjoys a song from the singer he likes very much.


The Difference Between Cognitive Behavioural Therapy And 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. In its place, addiction victims and therapists work collectively to overcome dependency.

Focused and quick treatment that is based on actions is what Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is all about. 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.

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.

Due to it's highly adaptable nature, CBT is used in both private and group counselling and it is also used in residential and non-residential rehab programs. A lot of rehabilitation facilities and addiction therapists use CBT as a part of their treatment programs.