Cognitive Behavioral therapy for treating symptoms of depression – How does it work?
According to recent reports, CBT or Cognitive behavioral therapy is one of the most effective treatments for depression. The core principles of CBT assume that the mood of a person is directly in relation with his thought patterns. Dysfunctional or negative thought adversely impacts the mood of a person, his physical state and also his sense of self-behavior. The ultimate objective of undergoing cognitive behavioral therapy is to let a person identify his negative patterns of thought, evaluate the validity and replace these with positive thoughts.
The therapists who practice CBT aim to help patients in changing their patterns of behavior which arise from negative thinking. It is through negative behavior and thoughts which push a person towards depression and make it impossible for the person to escape its symptoms.
Common techniques of cognitive behavioral therapy
#1: Socratic questioning
Questioning will let the therapist in stimulating the self-awareness of the client and help him focus on the definition of the issue and expose the belief system of the client. The therapist also focuses on altering the irrational beliefs while revealing the cognitive process of the client.
This can be also called diary work or research work and self-monitoring is also used to record the degree and amount of behaviors and thoughts. This offers the therapist and client information with regards to the degree of the negative affirmations of the client.
In order to help with cognitive restructuring, clients are usually allotted some amount of homework. Few CBT homework assignments can include behavioral activation activities which supervise automatic thoughts.
#4: Behavioral Experiments
The process of experiment includes observing, experiencing, planning and reflecting. Such steps are done through testing thoughts, discovery and observation.
Cognitive Behavioral therapy for treating depression
The method and focus of CBT sets apart from all other forms of counseling therapy and here are the ways in which this differs from all the other treatments for depression.
- CBT will include two tasks, the first one being cognitive restructuring where the patient and therapist work to alter thinking patterns and the second one being behavioral activation where patients learn to beat all kinds of obstacles for participating in positive activities. CBT especially deals with the immediate present.
- CBT deals with few problems. In group and individual sessions, problem thinking and problem behaviors are identified, recognized and addressed specifically.
- This therapy is entirely goal-oriented and patients which work with therapists are told to define goals for every session and long-term goals. There are few goals which can also be directed through completion post the completion of the sessions.
- CBT employs different strategies which includes Socratic questioning, imagery, role playing, guided discovery and behavioral experiments.
Therefore, as we see, CBT is possibly considered as one of the best treatments for depression. If you’re someone who is thinking about CBT and what it is, you can take into account the above mentioned points and use them as a reference for your treatment.