Learning How to Replace Addictive Behaviors With Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

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Drug treatment is an absolutely essential piece of the recovery puzzle. While in treatment, you will receive such beneficial and essential services such as medical detoxification, life and coping skills training and aftercare programming to give you the help and support you need as you transition back into your normal everyday life. The most important element of drug treatment is uncovering the underlying causes of your addiction and learning to replace addictive behaviors with healthier behaviors that support a recovery-based lifestyle. This can be accomplished by the utilization of various therapy techniques, and the most popular therapeutic intervention found in many treatment centers is cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT).

What Is Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy?

Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is a form of psychotherapy that focuses on examining the relationships between the thoughts, feelings and behaviors that an individual holds at a certain point in their life. When CBT is used in addiction treatment, therapists help client explore the patterns of thinking that lead to self-destructive actions and the beliefs that direct these thoughts. Once these maladaptive patterns are identified and addressed, people who struggle with drug and alcohol addiction are able modify those old patterns of thinking towards healthier ways to cope with issues.

CBT  is different from more traditional forms of psychotherapy in the fact that both the therapist and  patient will actively work together to help the patient recover from their addiction and the mental issues that underlying their addiction. People who undergo cognitive-behavioral therapy can expect their therapist to be problem-focused and goal-directed in addressing the symptoms of their substance abuse. Unlike other forms of psychotherapy, CBT is a much more active therapeutic intervention, and those who decide to take this form of therapy can expect to do homework or engage in some form of active practice of the skills they learn in therapy outside of sessions.

The Ways in Which CBT Can Help Clients Overcome Addictive Behaviors

Through the use of cognitive-behavioral therapy, clients will be able to overcome their addictive behaviors in a number of ways which can include the following:

Development of Positive Thoughts and Thought Patterns

Those addicted to drugs and alcohol often suffer from  thought patterns that reinforce feelings of helplessness. In order to cope with these feelings they often turn drugs and alcohol in order to cope with the shame and guilt of feeling helpless. Through CBT, clients can learn the benefits of positive thinking and how it can help them deal with feeling  overwhelmed by everyday circumstances. CBT instills a strong sense of confidence in individuals, and they feel they  handle certain situations in a much more healthy and proactive fashion without turning to substances.

Improve Self-Esteem

Cognitive behavioral therapy can also help addicts improve their self-image and bolster their self-esteem. Once a client’s self-esteem begins to grow, they will no longer desire nor feel the need to use drugs and alcohol as a means of escape. By constantly reinforcing a person’s self-worth, they will  start to believe that they truly deserve a better life than the one they currently have. CBT allows clients in addiction treatment programs to feel inspired and motivated to improve their personal circumstances.

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Baby Steps

In order to effectively break free from substance abuse, clients need adequate time and space to deal with the deeper issues that allowed their addiction to grow. With cognitive behavioral therapy, patients are gradually introduced to new concepts that will help them break the cycle of addiction at their own pace. CBT is extremely versatile, and it can easily be tailored to suit individual needs.

Helps Clients to Resist Peer Pressure

Of all the obstacles that stand in the way of recovery, peer pressure is one obstacle that is difficult for many people to resist. During cognitive behavioral therapy, those who are struggling with addiction will learn to practice new behaviors that will help them reach their desired goals in recovery. This will prepare them to resist when others pressure them to use. With continued practice, clients will be able to “just say no” to the drugs and alcohol and the activities that helped create the addiction. Ultimately, clients feel much more confident doing this in real life situations as they present themselves.

Would You Like to Learn More About Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy?

Cognitive-behavioral therapy has been a widely popular and effective technique that continues to be a cornerstone of many drug treatment programs. If you or a loved one is thinking about utilizing CBT as part of your own recovery treatment plan, Recovery Hub is your one-stop resource. Our website features many informative articles regarding cognitive-behavioral and other effective therapy options, and our staff can work with you to find the best treatment facilities that use CBT. Don’t put off your recovery any longer; pick up the phone and call Recovery Hub today at 888-220-4352 or visit our website.

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