Cognitive Behaviour Therapies (CBT) for depression and anxiety disorders
At first I didn’t see how the CBT would help me, now I feel I’ve come a very long way in a short period of time.
Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) is a talking therapy that can help you manage your problems by changing the way you think and behave. It is most commonly used to treat anxiety disorders and depression.
CBT cannot remove your problems, but it can help you deal with them in a more positive way. It is based on the concept that your thoughts, feelings, physical sensations and actions are interconnected, and that negative thoughts and feelings can trap you in a vicious cycle.
CBT aims to help you crack this cycle by breaking down overwhelming problems into smaller parts and showing you how to change these negative patterns to improve the way you feel. Unlike some other talking treatments, CBT deals with your current problems, rather than focusing on issues from your past. It looks for practical ways to improve your state of mind on a daily basis.
I have learnt so much about myself and CBT has enabled me to continue with everyday life (work, going out). I would strongly recommend CBT and First Step.
What happens during CBT sessions?
During the sessions, you will work with your therapist to break down your problems into their separate parts – such as your thoughts, physical feelings and actions.
You and your therapist will analyse these areas to work out if they are unrealistic or unhelpful and to determine the effect they have on each other and on you. Your therapist will then be able to help you work out how to change unhelpful thoughts and behaviours.
After working out what you can change, your therapist will ask you to practice these changes in your daily life and you will discuss how you got on during the next session.
The eventual aim of therapy is to teach you to apply the skills you have learnt during treatment to your daily life. This should help you manage your problems and stop them having a negative impact on your life – even after your course of treatment finishes.
CBT has been an excellent therapy and helped me move forward. I have a future now and have the skills to take my life forward.
These video clips show examples of what might happen in a session in the case for a patient with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. The therapist and patient work together to understand the problem, what is keeping it going and how they might work together to make changes.
How many sessions will I need?
It varies greatly between patients but you and your therapist would usually agree a small number of sessions at the start to see if CBT is likely to be helpful to you.
How long will the sessions take?
Approximately 50 minutes.
How often will I be seen?
This varies on patients and also the stage of therapy but usually once every one or two weeks
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