Important Aspects Of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

By Thomas Graham

Psychotherapy forms an important component of management for many physical and mental illness. In most cases it is offered alongside other forms of treatments (such as pharmacotherapy). Cognitive behavioral therapy, CBT, is available in New Jersey and involves attending talk sessions with a trained therapist with the aim of identifying possible causes of an illness and working on their solutions. The conditions for which it has been found to be most effective include eating disorders, depression and anxiety disorders among others.

Sessions are typically held once every week or every two weeks with each lasting thirty minutes to one hour. The total number of sessions required varies depending on the type and severity of the illness as well as the response that is shown by the client. The therapy is based on dividing problems into three major groups: thoughts, emotions and actions. Harmful thoughts and emotions are identified and dropped.

To be effective, the treatment needs to be approached as a partnership. Clients who actively participate in the sessions have better outcomes than those who do not. The client and the therapist should strive to agree on the major issues regarding their illness and its treatment. Goals should be set by the two and regular assessment done to determine progress.

It is important to bear in mind that results are not immediate. Many patients may even feel worse as they open up part of their emotional lives especially during the first few sessions. Sticking to the treatment plan whether one feels motivated or not is central to the success of treatment. Share these struggles with the therapist so that they can assist you devise ways of tolerating the challenges.

This treatment may be offered to individual patients or to groups. It is, as a matter of fact an important part of family and couples therapy. When used for groups, the only requirement is that the clients should share similar problems. The advantage of offering CBT to groups is that the group members learn coping skills from each other and are likely to respond faster than individual clients.

Honesty is also central to the success of the treatment. The client, in particular, should be willing to openly share their thoughts, emotions and experiences. In case of any reservations regarding certain events or emotions, the therapist should be notified. The therapist, on their part, is expected to hold all the information that they receive in confidence (except when they are compelled to share it by the law).

Symptoms may recur after some time in some patients even after successful treatment. When this happens, the right thing to do is to practice the skills that were gained in previous CBT sessions. If very severe, a repeat of the treatment may be necessary. Other forms of treatment may be helpful in increasing the effectiveness of CBT. This includes drugs such as depressants (in the case of depression) and other types of talk therapy.

The decision to seek CBT may be made by your primary doctor or by yourself. Regardless of the case, you should ensure that the therapist is qualified (has the right education and licensing). Find out the costs involved in advance and whether or not this is part of your health cover. This will help you avoid dropping out of treatment due to financial constraints.

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