Cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) is a type of psychotherapy that aids people to address dysfunctional or unhealthy thinking habits, feelings and behaviors. CBT has been known to be effective in the treatment of psychological and psychiatric disorders. These psychological and psychiatric disorders may range from problems such as depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorders, eating disorders to even drug misuse. According to Simone (2013), Cognitive behavioral therapy is well-suited to address the varied and often longstanding problems of patients with psychological disorders such as Personality Disorders for several reasons. Unlike other forms of psychotherapy, CBT only deals with the current issues affecting a patient rather than focusing on the past occurrences. It mostly encompasses talking and change of behavior so as to influence a patient’s thinking (Cognitive) and ultimately change how they do things (Behavior) (Hoermann, Corinne , Zupanick,D & Dombeck, 2013). CBT proves effective in that it incorporates various techniques to adjust these factors; these include cognitive restructuring, behavior modification, exposure, psycho education, and skills training. Alexis (2011) adds that, CBT for people with psychological disorders emphasize the importance of a supportive and collaborative therapeutic relationship, which enhances the patient’s willingness to make changes thus serving as a strong source of contingency.
According to medical journal by Williams and Garland ,their evidence and randomized controlled studies illustrate that it is in effective intervention for psychological disorders, increasing evidence also suggests that’s it is useful in a number of other psychiatric disorders such as social phobia, schizophrenia and bipolar disorders (Williams & Garland, 2011). CBT is known to be more effective with the use of medication; studies suggest that CBT together with anti depressants is more effective than treatment alone for depression. CBT can also lead to lower occurrence of a further relapse. In my opinion common CBT skills can be readily utilized in management of patients in everyday nursing practice. Williams and Garland (2011) argue that there are certain circumstances when it should be particularly considered, these include:
- Situations whereby, a patient opts to use both medication and psychological interventions or the latter alone.
- Presence of extreme situations of unhelpful thinking, unhelpful behaviors and reduced activity being the main target problems during CBT
- Where partial or no improvement at all has occurred on the medication given to the patient
- A sufficient dose of medication is being prevented by various side effects from being taken over an acceptable period.
- Where considerable psychological problems such as unhelpful behaviors e.g. self-cutting and alcohol misuse, relationship problems and difficulties at work places are present and medication alone would not be able to adequately address the problem.
In my opinion what makes CBT so effective is that it is an effective psychosocial intervention. It provide: a focus on present problems of significance to the patient; it provides a clear, structure or plan to the treatment being offered; and delivery that is built on an effective therapeutic relationship. CBT is basically a psycho educational form of psychotherapy. Its purpose is for patients to discover and learn new skills of self-management that they can put into practice in their everyday life. It adopts a mutual stance that encourages patients to work on changing how they feel by putting into practice the skills they have learned.
Hoermann,S., Corinne E. Zupanick,D & Dombeck,M.(2013) Cognitive-Behavioral
Therapy for Personality Disorders (CBT) Web, Gulf Bender Center, Retrieved Aug 15, 2013
Horvath, A, T.,Misra K.,Epner, A, K , and Cooper, G,M., (2011)Cognitive-Behavioral
Therapy, Web, Seven Counties Services , Inc, Retrieved, Aug 15,2013
Williams, C., & Garland, A. (2011). A cognitive–behavioural therapy assessment model
for use in everyday clinical practice. Advances in Psychiatric Treatment, 8(3), 172-179.