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3 Minutes Read

What Are The Pros And Cons Of CBT?

When you’re thinking about starting therapy, choosing what kind of approach or modality would fit you best can feel overwhelming. Many therapists practice Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) - but, what is CBT and how do you know if it’s right for you?

CBT defined

CBT is a type of psychotherapy that helps people identify and change the negative thoughts and behaviors that contribute to their emotional distress. It is short-term and goal-oriented, based on the idea that our thoughts, feelings, and behaviors are all interconnected. 

When we have negative thoughts, it can lead to negative feelings and behaviors. And, when we have negative feelings and behaviors, it can lead to negative thoughts. CBT can help you break this cycle by teaching you how to identify and challenge your negative thoughts and how to develop more helpful and realistic ways of thinking.

CBT has been shown to be effective in treating a wide range of mental health conditions, including depression, anxiety, eating disorders, and substance abuse. It is also effective in helping people manage chronic pain and stress.

Pros of CBT:

Since CBT is a short-term therapy, you typically need a relatively short time commitment of about 12-16 weeks.

CBT is a goal-oriented therapy, which means that you and your therapist will work together to set specific goals and develop a treatment plan that is right for you.

CBT sessions follow a predictable structure, which means that there is a specific format you can expect for your appointments. This can help you feel more in control of your therapy and make it easier to track your progress.

CBT focuses on re-training your everyday thoughts, building concrete skills, and altering your regular behavior, which means you can expect to improve your ability to manage your symptoms in your daily life.

Skills you learn in CBT are practical and transferable, which means they are likely to help you cope better with future stresses and difficulties even after the treatment has finished.

Cons of CBT:

CBT can be challenging - it requires you to confront your negative thoughts and beliefs, which can be an uncomfortable process.

Most therapists who practice CBT recommend 1-2 homework exercises for you to complete between sessions, which may require time and a sense of motivation.

CBT is not a cure-all, and it may not be effective for everyone. In particular, clients with a significant history of trauma benefit more from a modified form of CBT — called Trauma-Focused CBT — or other therapeutic approaches.

Due to the structured nature of CBT, it may not be suitable for people with more complex mental health needs or learning difficulties.

CBT focuses on the individual’s capacity to change themselves — their thoughts, feelings and behaviors — and does not address wider problems in systems or families that often have a significant impact on an individual’s mental health and wellbeing.

Overall, CBT is a safe and effective treatment for a wide range of mental health conditions. If you are considering trying CBT, let’s chat more about if it could be right for you — click the button below to schedule a free phone consultation.


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