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Mental health professionals have a variety of treatment options available based on their clients’ conditions. Among all these approaches, though, cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) stands out as one of the most effective. Unfortunately, 42 percent of residential treatment centers don’t offer this form of therapy. This means many people go without a recovery option that could help.

Transformations at Mending Fences understands the importance of offering an abundance of therapies proven to work. Regardless of what a person is going through, a treatment exists that can help. Failure to offer CBT as a potential approach is a disservice to clients. Contact us today to learn if cognitive behavioral therapy could be an effective part of your personal treatment plan.

What CBT?

Cognitive behavioral therapy is a type of treatment that focuses on changing behaviors, beliefs, thoughts and attitudes. In doing so, it helps to develop coping strategies and improve a person’s ability to regulate their emotions. Such an approach can help overcome triggers that worsen substance abuse disorders, but doctors also use CBT to tackle mental illness.

The following are just a few areas where cognitive behavioral therapy has shown effectiveness:

  • Depression and anxiety disorders
  • Schizophrenia
  • Psychotic disorders
  • Substance abuse
  • Process addictions
  • Eating disorders
  • Anger management

This list really is just the tip of the iceberg with CBT uses. Professionals also use the approach in elder care, relationship therapy, preventing occupational stress and even treating autism. It’s considered a collaborative therapy where clients and counselors work together, but it can take place in an individual or group setting. Client needs dictate this decision.

The core principles of cognitive behavioral therapy state that mental illness involves learned patterns of unhelpful behavior and faulty ways of thinking. By facing these issues head on, CBT helps clients relieve the symptoms of mental health problems.

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Does Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Work?

The one thing people ask about any therapy is “does it work? In some cases, we need more research to answer this question. This is far from the case with CBT approaches. CBT is probably the most researched and empirically supported cognitive treatment out there. Most experts in mental health and addiction fields view its effectiveness as unequaled.

Studies have shown that CBT has a higher success rate than other treatments. This was true in nearly 90 percent of reviewed research. Frontiers in Psychiatry even called cognitive behavioral therapy the “gold standard of psychotherapy.” Research shows the treatment is most effective with bulimia, somatoform disorders, general stress, anger control problems and anxiety disorders.

Studies also found CBT to be as effective as medications when treating certain forms of PTSD, substance abuse, tics and borderline personality disorder. This doesn’t mean, however, that medication isn’t appropriate in certain instances. In fact, CBT is often most effective when combined with other targeted therapies. Identifying the best combination of approaches is vital.

Benefits of CBT

The primary benefit of cognitive behavioral therapy is obvious: it works. The statistics don’t lie, but clients should still know what they’re signing up for. CBT essentially helps people learn to become their own therapists. Before setting out on this journey, though, the following benefits help them get to that point.

  • Client expectations: CBT is time-limited, so clients know exactly what to expect in time commitment
  • Problem-specific: Therapy focuses on specific problems and goals. This makes success more attainable
  • Improved communication: Since CBT is collaborative, it helps clients improve their communication
  • Engaging: Cognitive behavioral therapy is highly engaging, so people have an active role in their treatment
  • Improved self-esteem: Low self-esteem is central to many mental health disorders. CBT can help overcome this

Each of these CBT benefits helps clients with specific needs. This therapy is wide ranging and uses a variety of strategies. Since everyone has different needs, not all available strategies will get used in treatment sessions. By pinpointing and understanding the problems their clients are facing, though, medical professionals can create a targeted approach that will work.

Learn if CBT Can Help You Today

If you or a loved one suffers from mental illness or a substance abuse disorder, there’s no reason to continue the suffering. Research has shown a variety of effective treatments that can overcome these issues. Cognitive behavioral therapy might stand out as the most effective, but everyone has different needs. It’s important to find an approach that works for you.

Transformations at Mending Fences is committed to helping our clients take their lives back. Drug abuse and mental illness do not have to control everything you do. Our certified staff of professionals is ready to help you figure out the best treatment option in your situation. Whether it’s CBT or one of our many other offerings, we’ll strive to find something that works for you.

Contact us today and get started on the path to mental wellness.