Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)
What is it?
CBT is a talking therapy that helps to redefine negative thinking and thought patterns into more positive and useful ones that are helpful to us. It works on the assumption that our thoughts, feelings, emotions and behaviours are all linked together, so that each will have an effect on the other. By learning to recognise and question negative thoughts, we are able to use a variety of techniques to change upsetting ideas into positive ones that are beneficial.
This therapy is a collaborative approach; therefore, it is driven by what you want to achieve working in conjunction with the therapist. Session last approximately 30 – 60 mins, the number required can be anything from 5 – 20 sessions depending on individual circumstances. These can be weekly or fortnightly depending on the individual requirements.The client will also be asked to commit to undertaking homework between sessions in order to achieve the best outcome possible.
Who can it help?
CBT is usually used to help those with anxiety and depression, and in people learning to live with a long term condition. However, it is also useful in some panic disorders and post-traumatic stress disorder.
What happens in a session?
A free initial consultation is always offered to every client, this ensures that an individual fully understands the process and commitment needed. During this, the therapist will ask questions about your life and health, and discuss any issues such as anxiety or depression, and how they affect your life. This allows a full assessment to be made as to the suitability of CBT, if this is not appropriate other forms of therapy can be suggested.
Following sessions will consist of you and the therapist working together to analyse your thoughts, feelings and behaviour, to see if they are unrealistic or unhelpful, and to see what the effect of these is. After this, therapy will help you to change your thoughts into ones that are more helpful, making you feel better by breaking the problem down into smaller parts.
What if I am already having treatment from my doctor?
CBT can help improve conditions that are also being treated by your doctor such as anxiety and depression. However, you should continue to take advice and medication if prescribed from your doctor, and inform them that you are receiving CBT. It is also important that you disclose any other treatment or medication to your therapist, as this could affect your therapy.