WHAT IS COGNITIVE BEHAVIORAL THERAPY?
Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is a form of talk therapy that treats problems by modifying the patient’s destructive thoughts and actions. In this research-backed form of addiction treatment, patients are encouraged to recognize and address negative or inaccurate thinking—and change their patterns of behavior accordingly.
The basic principle of CBT is that most behavioral and emotional reactions are learned, so they can be changed and unlearned. Therefore, the goal is to provide skills and strategies to help manage stressful situations and cope with difficult challenges. Cognitive behavioral therapy for substance use disorders takes the same principles and applies them to the thought patterns behind addiction.
COGNITIVE BEHAVIORAL THERAPY REHABILITATION
In CBT for substance abuse, a skilled therapist works with those recovering from addiction—particularly those who struggle with destructive and negative thoughts. After negative thought and belief patterns are identified, the therapist helps the patient practice different ways of thinking…ways that can alleviate upsetting emotions and harmful behavior.
CBT for alcoholism and drug addiction is offered in both individual and group therapy programs.
COGNITIVE BEHAVIORAL THERAPY FOR ALCOHOLISM AND DRUG ADDICTION
At Buena Vista, cognitive behavioral therapy for substance abuse focuses on changing the negative thoughts that prevent you from changing your life. Substance abuse often creates “all-or-nothing” thinking, which causes feelings of powerlessness and a lack of control over addictive behavior. Believing you will never be able to stay 100% clean for the rest of your life strips resilience and can result in relapse.
Reprogramming your thinking to accept progress over perfection goes a long way toward maintaining sobriety. Other negative ways of thinking that must be modified include using “should” or “ought” statements, magnifying the negative and minimizing the positive, and overgeneralizing.
WHO BENEFITS FROM COGNITIVE BEHAVIORAL THERAPY?
CBT is an effective and helpful tool that can be used alone or in combination with other addiction treatment options. It can treat substance use disorders as well as other mental health disorders such as post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, anxiety, eating disorders, and more.
Additionally, the tools and thought processes learned at our center for cognitive behavioral therapy address emotional challenges in life and can help you:
- Prevent relapse of drug or alcohol use
- Manage co-occurring mental illness symptoms
- Identify ways to govern emotions and stressful life situations
- Cope with loss and grief
- Manage chronic illness or physical conditions
- Overcome trauma, abuse, or violence
THE COGNITIVE BEHAVIORAL THERAPY PROCESS
During CBT sessions, your therapist urges you to authentically share feelings and identify trends and origins. He or she helps you become aware of thought and belief patterns—especially the negative or inaccurate thinking that may be at least partly responsible for recurring struggles.
The goal is to reshape your thinking by helping you practice better thought patterns until they eventually become a habit. Additionally, our cognitive behavioral therapy program is effective in treating addiction as we help you:
- Identify the feelings, thoughts, and patterns that trigger alcohol or drug use or cravings
- Learn how to recognize internal processes and behavioral patterns that lead to substance use
- Challenge patterns that cause you to jump to conclusions, overgeneralize, or engage in all-or-nothing thinking
- Replace negative, inaccurate thought patterns with more productive and realistic thought patterns
- Manage the medical and mental illness symptoms that may have caused you to use alcohol or drugs to cope
- Set recovery goals
While CBT for alcohol use disorder or drug addiction doesn’t solve all your problems, it does give you a method for coping with your situation. As you accomplish this, you will experience more positivity about yourself and be open to a better life.
Results take time, but the hard work you put into cognitive behavioral therapy is well worth it.
Ready to regain control of your life? Take the first step on your journey to addiction recovery today.