No two people’s bodies respond the same way to treatment. Just as this is true for patients who receive treatment for cancer, this applies to people who receive addiction treatment. Due to this, rehab centers offer multiple methods of therapy so that they can provide for many people’s needs. Some of them use a variety of cognitive therapy techniques.
What Is Cognitive Therapy?
As a type of psychotherapy, rehab therapists use cognitive therapy to treat several types of psychological issues. Along with drug addiction, it can treat anger, anxiety, depression, eating disorders, marital conflict and panic. The therapy focuses on how patients currently act, communicate and behave rather than on early childhood experiences. It also helps patients see certain biases and distortions in how they think.
Cognitive therapy gives patients ways to change how they think by teaching them effective skills to help themselves. Patients also use these skills to change how they behave and feel. As an action-oriented, rational and practical form of therapy, it helps patients become better at dealing with problems in life.
Types of Cognitive Therapy Techniques
Although rehab centers offer cognitive therapy as part of residential treatment programs, it’s usually part of an outpatient rehab program. A certified or licensed therapist conducts the therapy sessions either alone or with a group of patients. Compared to conventional psychotherapy, cognitive therapy is shorter, lasting for up to 12 sessions. Therapists use varied cognitive therapy techniques based on each patient’s needs.
Cognitive rehearsal is a technique that teaches patients how to cope with problems. During the sessions, therapists ask patients to imagine tough situations that they’ve been through. They work together to practice how to deal with those situations. This allows patients to draw on the rehearsed behavior when they’re actually in those situations again. This is a useful technique when facing triggers of drug or alcohol use.
With the guided discovery technique, therapists ask patients a string of questions. This guides them toward recognizing distortions in how they think.
Homework is a technique that encourages patients to discover aspects about themselves. It also reinforces the insights that they make during therapy sessions. This technique involves therapists asking patients to do homework assignments such as taking notes, keeping a journal or reading. Patients might also be asked to apply a new coping skill and record the results.
In some cases, keeping a journal is one of the main cognitive therapy techniques that therapists use. They require patients to write down their emotions and thoughts every day. Therapists review the journal entries with their patients to discover patterns.
Some therapists like to use role-playing exercises. During their sessions, the therapists act out the correct responses to situations. Then, the patients repeat this behavior.
Validity testing is a technique in which therapists ask patients to defend their beliefs and thoughts. This exposes which beliefs and thoughts are faulty should the patient not be able to give objective evidence to support them.
Addiction Treatment at Steps to Recovery
Cognitive therapy techniques are beneficial for drug or alcoholism treatment. At Steps to Recovery, our staff is trained to offer cognitive therapy in our outpatient and intensive outpatient programs. Our intimate atmosphere leads patients through two phases of recovery that provide
- addiction education
- daily and long-term goals
- information about the 12 steps
- life skills.
Addiction treatment doesn’t have to interrupt your life. You can still go to school or work as well as spend time with your family while you get help. Call 866.488.8684 to learn the steps to recovery and treatment by using the therapies we have available.