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Cognitive Behavioural Therapy Against Addictions

Learning About Cognitive Behavioural Therapy

Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) addresses morbid thoughts and feelings for the purpose of treating addiction and psychiatric disorders.

Dr. Aaron T. Beck in the 1960s founded the Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) as a means of treating mental illnesses.


Get The Resources You Need To Overcome Dependency

Defeating addiction calls for input from many people and the deployment of a lot of resources. Drug addiction treatment programs, both outpatient and residential, will help you avoid relapses and stay sober afterwards. Mental health counsellors will help you learn the skills you need to apply in your life to ensure complete recovery.

Make adjustments now by getting a suitable medical facility.


Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) addresses the problem areas of thoughts and behaviour resulting from drug addiction.


Many of the groups and rehabs are utilising Cognitive behavioural therapy in the recovery processes. 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.

Along with addictions, CBT also facilitates treating various co-occurring disorders, such as the following:

  • Panicking
  • Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD)
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
  • Eating disorders
  • PTSD or Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

The CBT centres are everywhere and you can attend anyone to get help today.


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How Cognitive Behavioural Therapy Works

CBT recognizes that many behaviours and feeling are dangerous and make no sense. Our environment and experiences in the past may be the cause of these actions and behaviours.

The patients can easily get to know the thoughts that are turning them to drug abuse through the help of the therapists. An automatic thought is impulse-based; it often comes from misrepresentations and internally generated feelings such as self-doubt 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.


When persons suffering from addiction realize the reason why they feel or act in a definite way and how these feelings and actions trigger drug use, they are better armed to combat their addictions.

It has also been noticed that making an attempt to visit the painful memories it becomes possible for recovering addicts to reduce the pain which is caused by them. The addicts then get a fresh opportunity to learn positive behaviours in order to replace their addiction for alcohol or drugs.


Dependency Treatment And Cognitive Behavioural Therapy

Most users are found to be suffering from deep despair and hopelessness which in the first place were caused by bad or distrustful thoughts.

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

How to identify what brings on the urge for the drug or alcohol on a day to day basis. As alleged by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, CBT helps people recovering from addictions deal with their triggers in three main ways.


Cbt Helps Patients To Get Past Drug Addiction And Alcoholism By

  • The false beliefs and insecurity issues that causes substance abuse can be resolved using CBT.
  • Providing the tools needed for self-help to improve their moods.
  • Teaching the individual effective skills at communicating.

The Skills Necessary For Managing Triggers

  • Recognise
  • Learn to identify what makes you want to take drugs or drink.
  • Shun
  • Try as much as possible to get away from these trigger situations.
  • Confront
  • This involves dealing with the thoughts and feelings that cause you to abuse the substance using methods learnt in CBT.

You don't have to be at the centres to try using the CBT techniques of overcoming addiction. Patients can do a lot of CBT exercises all by themselves - at a group meeting and at home.

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

Therapists that practice CBT use special exercises to facilitate addiction recovery.

Here are some examples of CBT techniques that are widely used in treatment of addictions:

  • Keeping Thought Records
  • Patients recovering from addiction review their automatic negative thoughts and search for solid evidence that proves and contradicts these thoughts.
  • The patients make a list of advantages and disadvantages of keeping or discarding the thoughts.
  • 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. 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. My supervisor may in fact think highly of me for being able to learn from my mistakes. I do not need alcohol to get a better feeling of myself.

  • CBT 'Behavioural Experiments' Technique
  • To see the one that has a greater effect on behaviour, the effects of positive thoughts can be compared to those of negative ones.
  • One person may react better when they self-criticize while another will do great when they self-motivated.
  • One needs to identify the behaviours that work best with them.

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
  • During this exercise, patients have to think about a past experience that causes severe negative feelings.
  • They capture their every emotion, sight, sound, impulse and thought they felt at that moment.
  • This will get rid of any nervousness they have been feeling.

Example: A young guy focuses on some painful experience from his childhood. He reproduces every feeling and emotion which he experienced at that 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.

  • Comfortable Activity Plan
  • This is a practice involving creating a healthy weekly list, entertaining practices to halt an individual's daily activities.
  • All the activities on the list should be easy to do, simple, and trigger positive emotions.
  • 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: A financial advisor who works a lot, finds fifteen minutes every day to relax at his desk instead of drinking alcohol or using drugs at work. They may choose to use that time to listen to some music or read on something interesting.


Difference Between Other Therapies And Cognitive Behavioural Therapy

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is more likeable than many other methods of therapy.

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 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. A number of 60 to 90-day rehabilitation programs also include CBT within the package to provide people an opportunity to learn instant coping techniques.

It has been observed that some techniques of psychotherapy can take many years before a strong impact is seen. Just sixteen sessions of CBT is often enough to obtain considerable improvement.

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy can easily be adapted, which makes it very idyllic in both outpatient and inpatient situations as well as group and private counselling atmospheres. A lot of rehabilitation facilities and addiction therapists use CBT as a part of their treatment programs.