Substance abuse involves more than just dependence on alcohol or drugs, it changes the way one thinks and responds to the environment. With substance obtaining and taking becoming the central focus of an individual’s life, reemerging into regular life requires realigning the way one thinks in order to promote positive effects. One of the best ways to induce this type of brain healing is through the use of cognitive behavioral therapy.

What is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy?

women talking about cognitive behavioral therapyCognitive behavioral therapy is a type of psychotherapy used to treat problematical thinking patterns by modifying dysfunctional emotions, behaviors, and thoughts. In contrast to traditional psychotherapy, like Freud’s childhood psychoanalysis, CBT aims to focus on solutions rather than root causes. By navigating through self-destructive patterns, clients are challenged to reconsider how they might break out of self-defeating psychological loops.

As a research-based treatment modality, CBT has been shown effective in treating a variety of mental health disorders such as bipolar, depression, schizophrenia, post-traumatic stress disorder, and anxiety.

How it Works

CBT is an action-oriented type of therapy. In other words, it does not focus on attempting to identify the reasons behind behavior, but rather, on helping individuals develop more effective coping mechanisms as well as awareness into their own thinking patterns.

When compared to the use of psychoactive medications, CBT has been shown as an effective treatment for the use of mild to moderate mental illnesses. Though for the treatment of more severe substance use disorders, such as opioid dependence, individuals may benefit more from a combination of medication and cognitive behavioral therapy.

What to Expect from CBT

Upon your first session with a therapist, it’s beneficial to understand the therapy as a working relationship between you and the therapist. The more you are willing to be open and trust the therapist, the more likely you are going to achieve results. In lieu of this, if you do not feel that you can connect to a chosen therapist in this way, try someone different. Yet don’t use this as an excuse to flee from having to do the work. Be honest with yourself. Why or why not is the therapist working? Then go from there.

It’s also critical to stick to your treatment plan. The more you engage in the process, the more likely you are to begin benefiting from the treatment. If you start skipping sessions or spend time blocking out the therapist, you are only slowing the progress.

Depending on the severity of circumstances and how many mental health disorders you are hoping to remedy, the effects of CBT will vary. Be patient. Like with many practices in life, progress takes time.

Beyond CBT

At First Step Center of Arizona, our team of addiction specialists provide individualized care for each client. With only 10 beds, our clientele benefits from receiving a personalized treatment program tailored to meet specified needs.

In addition to offering cognitive behavioral therapy, First Step Center also offers:

Don’t wait any longer to begin your treatment journey. First Step Center understands its clients and believes in offering integrated treatment that provides a holistic method in helping you or a loved one begin recovery. To find out more about cognitive behavioral therapy or addiction therapy, call us now at 866.832.6398.