Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) Explained

Posted by: Dr. Justin D'Arienzo, Psy.D., ABPP

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)

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Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is a type of psychotherapy that focuses on changing the way people think and behave. It is one of the most widely used forms of psychotherapy in the world, and it has been shown to be effective in treating a wide range of mental health conditions, including depression, anxiety, and eating disorders.

What is CBT?

CBT is based on the idea that our thoughts, feelings, and behaviors are all interconnected. In other words, the way we think about things can have a big impact on how we feel and how we behave. CBT helps people to identify negative or unhelpful thinking patterns, and to learn how to challenge these patterns and replace them with more helpful ones.

How does CBT work?

CBT is typically conducted over a series of weekly or biweekly sessions. In each session, the therapist will work with the client to identify specific problems that they are facing, and to develop a plan for addressing these problems. The plan may include a variety of techniques, such as:

  • Cognitive restructuring: This involves identifying and challenging negative or unhelpful thoughts.
  • Behavioral experiments: This involves testing out new behaviors in order to see if they lead to more positive outcomes.
  • Exposure therapy: This involves gradually exposing people to situations that they find anxiety-provoking, in order to help them overcome their fear.

What are the benefits of CBT?

CBT has been shown to be effective in treating a wide range of mental health conditions, including:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety disorders
  • Eating disorders
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Substance abuse
  • Chronic pain
  • Insomnia

CBT is also a relatively short-term form of therapy, and it is often covered by insurance.

If you are interested in learning more about CBT, or if you think that it might be helpful for you, please talk to your doctor or a mental health professional. Our licensed psychologists and therapists are experts in cognitive behavioral therapy