Behavioral therapy is an effective option when it comes to treating addiction. While it works for both adults and teens, studies suggest that it’s more effective on young adults. So what is behavior therapy, and how does it help young adults who struggle with addiction?
What Is Behavioral Therapy?
Also known as behavior therapy, behavioral therapy is a type of psychotherapy. Experts use it to reduce or completely eliminate unhealthy or destructive behaviors in people. It’s usually these destructive behaviors that lead to the development of addiction.
Behavior therapy works on the premise that environments shape people. As a result, people learn both good and bad behaviors that their environments reinforce in some manner. It’s the abnormal behaviors that lead to the development of mental health issues such as anxiety or compulsive disorders.
What Is the Goal of Behavior Therapy?
The overall goal of behavior therapy is to replace bad behaviors with good ones. It’s not enough to simply remove bad behaviors. Good behaviors have to take the place of these bad behaviors to form a lasting impact on people. This goal requires unique strategies such as:
- Positive reinforcement
- Aversive conditioning
- Systematic desensitization
- Talk therapy
Behavioral therapy differs from psychoanalysis practices because it relies on conditioning techniques. Psychoanalysis practices focus on the unconscious processes that form bad behavior.
Young Adults and Behavioral Therapy
Consider the fact that it’s easier for young adults to learn new languages than it is for adults. At a younger age, the brain is easier to shape. Young adults can learn things in a fraction of the time that it takes adults.
Therefore, it’s not surprising that studies show behavior therapy has a larger impact on young adults than adults. Simply put, young adults haven’t lived with certain destructive behaviors for as long. It’s easier for therapists to help change bad habits that haven’t been around for a long period of time.
With that said, both adults and young adults benefit from this type of therapy. However, it will take longer for adults to get the same benefits that young adults get. Therapists have to work harder to remove negative behaviors and teach positive ones.
Where Young Adults Can Go to Recover
At Ashley Addiction Treatment, our young adult program includes comprehensive behavioral therapy along with supplementary holistic care. We’ve also recently introduced a young adult extended care program for young men between the ages of 18–25 years old.
Find out how behavioral therapy can lead your child down the path to recovery. Reach out to us today at 866-313-6307 for more information.