CBT Techniques for Addiction Therapy

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Therapist using CBT Techniques

CBT is one of the approaches that therapists use most often for addiction treatment. This one-on-one therapy aims to change the way that patients think and behave. Instead of gravitating toward negative thoughts and actions, patients learn to embrace the positive. Take a closer look at some of the most popular CBT techniques for addiction therapy.

Exploring the Underlying Causes of Addiction

young woman receives cbt techniques from therapistOne of the CBT techniques that is most effective in recovery is getting to the root of addiction. Addictive behavior has to stem from somewhere. Several different factors can lead to the development of an addiction.

Through CBT, patients are able to discover and address these underlying issues. Often, the issue is an undiagnosed mental illness. Patients who struggle with depression, bipolar disorder or anxiety often choose to self-medicate using drugs or alcohol. Obviously, treating the underlying mental health concern is a vital part of the healing process.

Underlying issues might also relate to trauma. Through therapy sessions, patients can identify and resolve trauma in their past. This is critical to preventing relapse after rehab and treatment ends.

Identifying Cognitive Distortion

Many individuals that struggle with addiction also struggle with cognitive distortion. This is when an individual’s thinking is flawed, and they’re only able to see themselves or their life situations in a negative way. In particular, patients might see everything in black or white.

The CBT technique of identifying cognitive distortion helps patients see their own reality from the outside. Making a mistake doesn’t make someone a failure, and there’s more gray area than black and white.

Additionally, part of this technique involves learning not to jump to conclusions or attribute low worth to one’s self. By learning to recognize individual strengths and focus on the positive, recovery is much easier.

Increase Understanding of Consequences

A common technique therapists use in cognitive behavioral therapy is identifying the consequences of situations. Many people dealing with addiction are unable to connect their actions and consequences. Learning to spot the connection can be helpful.

For example, some people feel that addiction is a burden and that they’re victims. It’s certainly true that addiction is an unfair disease. However, accepting responsibility is key. Knowing that certain actions lead to consequences can help create a pattern of healthier behavior moving forward.

CBT Techniques Aren’t the Only Way to Treat an Addiction

There’s no one-size-fits-all drug rehab. CBT may be an important part of treatment, but it isn’t the only component. Comprehensive care and treatment involve a range of different approaches for each patient. Just some of these approaches include the following:

  • Detox
  • Pharmacological treatment
  • Inpatient and outpatient programs
  • Sober and transitional living arrangements
  • Yoga and massage therapy
  • Nutrition therapy

CBT is one of the many ways that patients can recover from addiction. At The Hills Treatment Center in Los Angeles, California, CBT is part of the comprehensive approach to treatment. If you’re ready to end addiction once and for all, call 844-915-0287 today.

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