One of the more popular forms of therapy is cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). It has been found to be highly effective for treating most forms of clinical depression. How successful is CBT? The answer depends on who you ask.
Most CBT therapists provide their clients with the necessary materials for CBT in a convenient online format. The first step in most cases of CBT is for the client to make an appointment. This ensures that the therapist can meet with the individual and determine if a session can be arranged. If not, the client may choose to receive one or more sessions elsewhere.
The first part of CBT involves four sessions lasting fifteen minutes each. During these sessions the psychiatrist will explore both the positive and negative emotions that cause symptoms of the patient’s disorder. During this time, the psychiatrist will also find the cognitive processes that contribute to the emotional imbalance, or the automatic negative thoughts, that are part of the disorder.
These cognitive-behavioral therapies often form the core of CBT for most people with major depression and anxiety disorders. A positive aspect of the CBT that is often overlooked is that it’s actually possible for the patient to increase their overall well-being through these therapies. This is not an option some people would opt for, however. For that reason, a good portion of CBT is dedicated to educating the patient about what they can do to combat their depression and anxiety.
Some people with disorders choose to receive treatment using exposure therapy. Exposure therapy deals with the patient being made aware of how their emotional reactions trigger feelings of stress and discomfort in others. In order for the therapist to reach this point, clients may have to first expose themselves to their feared situations over again. If therapists can’t make their clients do this, then therapists often use different types of distraction to help clients keep from becoming overly sensitive to their feelings. This way, they are able to build up their coping skills over time.
The other half of the two therapy methods used in CBT is called response prevention. Response prevention basically works by changing the way a person processes information, and how they behave in response to certain events. Cognitive therapy deals with teaching a person how to better control their responses to emotional stimuli such as stress, anger, fear, and other things. Many people with anxiety disorders respond particularly well to response prevention, as their responses are oftentimes inappropriate or out of proportion to the situation at hand. People with OCD may respond to prompts such as “don’t eat that cookie” by throwing the entire food bar! This method allows people to learn to better control their response in such situations, thereby reducing their anxiety and improving their quality of life overall.
Both types of therapy are very intensive, but you can likely see significant results from only one or perhaps even both of them. The best thing to do is consult your therapist regarding which method would work best for you. If you prefer the structure of a weekly CBT program, and would like a more hands-on approach with your therapist, you may want to choose an intensive cbt program. These types of programs will definitely require more individualized attention and follow-up after treatment.
However, if you prefer the more laid back and relaxing nature of a weekly CBT program, you may find a less intensive cbt program suitable for you. Some therapists will offer a more “homework-based” CBT. In this type of course, you will be given materials to complete and then your therapist will assess how you are doing. You will be given feedback on how you are doing, and you may be required to answer interview questions or complete surveys on a periodic basis. After completion of these assignments, your therapist will send you an email or call with a progress report outlining your progress. Whether you prefer a more hands-on, intense approach or a more laid back CBT, your therapist should be able to customize it to meet your needs.