Within addiction rehab, CBT techniques can play an integral role in helping program participants change addictive behaviors. Motivated clients see changes occur rapidly. What makes some of these techniques work so well?
Understanding CBT Against the Backdrop of Addiction Counseling
Formally called cognitive behavioral therapy, CBT is a form of psychotherapy that works well in both short and long-term settings. Therapists use it during one-on-one counseling sessions as well as in the group therapy environment. Its tenets are surprisingly simple. CBT stipulates that a person operates under a cognitive triangle consisting of actions, feelings, and thoughts.
Each triangle component has the power to affect the other two. As a result, a flawed segment can lead to inadequate responses from these two. In a specific situation, your actions may be out of line if you base them on skewed thought processes. Researchers discovered that those who consistently abuse substances operate with flawed cognitive triangles.
CBT Techniques You Might Encounter During Treatment
To help program participants adjust these triangles in a rehab setting, therapists use a variety of techniques to bring about change. The ultimate goal is to help those struggling with addiction unlearn negative behaviors by affecting thoughts and feelings. One method involves pausing between the development of a thought and carrying out an action. Breathing techniques reduce stressors that would otherwise lead to using.
Recognizing negative thoughts that frequently recur is another technique. Through journaling and other techniques, program participants begin to understand specific destructive patterns. Typically, you might associate these thoughts with low self-esteem and feelings of poor self-worth.
CBT also acknowledges the presence of cognitive distortions. In this scenario, you evaluate feelings and thoughts against the backdrop of objective rationality. You may learn that something you believed your entire life isn’t real. While this realization can be an upsetting, it can also be a liberating moment. For many, it’s a time of shedding self-doubt and guilt over situations you had no control over.
Cognitive restructuring is on the other side of this equation. During this process, you replace distorted thoughts and feelings with corrected ones, which will affect your actions. In the past, you may have believed that you had no choice but to use. Through cognitive restructuring, you learn that you have the option to refuse. You build coping skills that you can try out in real life group therapy settings with peers who will give you honest feedback.
Do You Need Help for an Addiction?
If you or a loved one needs help for a substance abuse problem, CBT may be the right approach to healing. At Ashley Addiction Treatment, friendly therapists use it alongside other proven modalities such as:
- Primary Program including on-site detox, interactive workshops, and various therapies
- Outpatient programs featuring evidence-based treatments
- Young Adult Program that addresses the unique needs of the 18 to 25 demographic
- Family programs that help re-establish connections
- Relapse prevention and counseling
Learn how CBT techniques can help with your recovery. Call Ashley Addiction Treatment today at 866-313-6307 for immediate assistance.