Ten years after medical school, I went back to school. I never really wanted to go back to school or change professions, as I love the patient-physician relationship, but I felt that I needed more training in psychiatry, and a brief course in mental health did not provide me with the additional education I desired. Although I prided myself in taking a holistic, person-centered approach to medicine, I felt that my patients and I were not completely addressing the mental-emotional component of their physical ailments for which they were seeking help.
One treatment that keep popping up journal articles I would read was Cognitive Behavioral Therapy or CBT. Studies showed promising patient outcomes using CBT, and this curiosity ultimately lead me to become a psychotherapist as well. Research was showing that CBT, when performed by a trained psychotherapist, was as effective as medication in treating depression.
CBT is a short-term, problem-focused form of behavioral treatment that helps people see the difference between beliefs, thoughts, and feelings, and free them from unhelpful patterns of behavior.
CBT is grounded in the belief that it is a person’s perception of events – rather than the events themselves – that determines how he or she will feel and act in response.
Although CBT as one of many interventions I use, CBT can help with:
- Panic attacks
- Obsessive compulsive disorders (OCD)
- Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Substance dependency
- Persistent pain
- Disordered eating
- Sexual issues
- Anger management issues
Most people with clearly defined behavioral and emotional concerns tend to reap the benefits of CBT. If any of the above issues resonate with you, I encourage you to try cognitive behavioral therapy.
With CBT, you’ll be able to adjust the thoughts that directly influence your emotions and behavior. This adjustment process is referred to as cognitive reconstructing, which happens through different CBT techniques.
Some CBT techniques are:
- Challenging beliefs
- Social, physical and thinking exercises
Cognitive behavioral therapy is much more than sitting and talking about whatever comes to mind during a session. CBT sessions are structured to ensure that the therapist and the person in treatment are focused on the different goals of each session, which in turn ensures that each and every session is productive.
If you or someone you know would benefit from cognitive behavioral therapy, please contact me today. I would be happy to speak with you about how I may be able to help.