Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
What is CBT?
CBT is an intensive, short-term (six to 20 sessions), problem-oriented approach. It was designed to be quick, practical and goal-oriented and to provide people with long-term skills to keep them healthy.
The focus of CBT is on the here-and-now—on the problems that come up in a person’s day-to-day life. CBT helps people to look at how they interpret and evaluate what is happening around them and the effects these perceptions have on their emotional experience.
Childhood experiences and events, while not the focus of CBT, may also be reviewed. This review can help people to understand and address emotional upset that emerged early in life, and to learn how these experiences may influence current responses to events.
More information can be found here at the BABCP
Why Choose CBT?
As of 2010, there are thought to be
between 400 and 500 types of therapy. However, when directly compared, only a handful of therapy approaches have been shown to be highly effective for the kinds of problems people usually seek help for, such as depression, anxiety, phobias and stress-related problems.
Of the many therapies available, cognitive behavioural therapy (cbt)
is increasingly identified as the “gold standard”— the best type of therapy for common difficulties.
This conclusion is supported by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) in the United States and the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (nice) in the UK.
Is CBT right for me?
Most people know within the first few sessions if they are comfortable with CBT and whether it is meeting their treatment needs.
Your therapist will also check to see that CBT is the right “fit” for you. When the fit is not quite right, the therapist may adjust the
treatment or suggest other treatment options.
However, in general, CBT may be a good therapy option for you if:
you are interested in learning practical skills to manage your present, day-to-day life and associated emotional difficulties
you are willing and interested in practising change strategies (“action plans”) between sessions to consolidate improvement.
CBT may not be for you if you want to focus exclusively on past issues, if you want supportive counselling, or if you are not willing to do homework/action plans between sessions.
What can CBT be used for?
CBT is an effective treatment for many psychological conditions.
mood issues, such as depression and bipolar disorder
anxiety issues, including specific phobias (e.g., fear of animals, heights, enclosed spaces), panic disorder, social phobia (social anxiety disorder), generalized anxiety disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder and posttraumatic stress disorder
bulimia nervosa and binge eating disorder
body dysmorphic disorder (i.e., body image)
substance use disorders (i.e., smoking, alcohol and other drugs).
COVID related anxieties
CBT can also be used to help people with:
habits such as over eating, hair pulling, skin picking and tics
sexual and relationship problems
chronic fatigue syndrome
chronic (persistent) pain
WHAT TO EXPECT
Nicola - "As a CBT therapist I relate to a personal trainer in the gym.
When you go to the gym you will be asked what your goals are, this is the same within therapy. Your personal trainer will then look at the equipment they have available, select which ones will help you achieve your goals and teach you how to use them. Therapy is the same, however the equipment is replaced by skills.
Like the gym, once you have been taught how to use the skills you need to continue to do so without the aid of the of your trainer for your work to become and stay effective. "