When an individual is dealing with substance abuse problems, it’s not unusual for them to have destructive thinking. Their outlook on the world and themselves, even, can take a drastic, negative turn. Because addiction can take such a toll on the psychological function of someone dealing with substance abuse problems, it is imperative to get them to a positive, healthy state of mind. CBT, cognitive behavioral therapy, allows clients to recognize harmful thinking patterns and helps them find positive ways to deal with unpleasant thoughts and harmful behavior.
What Is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy?
This form of therapy is present-oriented psychotherapy designed to redirect destructive cognition and behavior. This form of therapy creates an active partnership between the patient and therapist to help the patient heal from any mental illness they may have. In doing this, the patient is urged to focus more on how they react to a situation rather than the situation itself. This method provides patients with the psychological tools to overcome substance abuse, including problem-solving, recognizing appropriate and efficient ways of responding to serious situations, and improved self-awareness. As a result, substance abusers stand a greater chance of relapsing because they have the necessary skills to deal with triggering situations.
The Benefits Of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
Improved Self Image:
There are many devastating effects of substance addiction. One of the bigger effects is the impact the addiction has on a patient’s self-image. Depression, anxiety, and self-hate are a few of the many symptoms substance abusers share. This therapy helps the patient gain a better outlook on themselves because they are equipped to handle any negative thoughts that come their way.
It is easy for someone who deals with an addiction to perceive everything as resulting in a negative end. With this method, patients are taught to think about things rationally and with logic rather than pure emotion. Therefore, clients are given the opportunity to keep unwanted thoughts from controlling them.
Resolve Relationship Difficulties:
It’s important to remember that addiction can not only mess with those who have fallen victim to it but can also touch the lives of those around them. Sometimes, relationships can be broken or halted because of the patient’s harmful tendencies. By using this form of recovery, he/she can mend broken relationships by learning how to handle a problem rather than hiding from it in drugs, alcohol, marijuana, etc.
Deciding to sober up is a major lifestyle change. That being said, it can be hard to adjust to a new way of thinking and acting. Participating in this process allows the patient to analyze the advantages and disadvantages of doing drugs and alcohol rather than being sober. From there, the patient can rationally think about any doubts or questions that may arise during the process. As well, the patient develops a will against giving into habits that may lead to relapsing.
Strong Support System:
A person suffering from addiction is most likely also suffering from the idea that they’re alone. However, when using this practice, the client is paired up with a therapist who maintains a sincere relationship with the patient and actively seeks new ways of thinking. Not only that, but the therapist can help this person identify and stray from the patterns that led to them using drugs in the first place. In CBT, substance abusers are encouraged to spend time with family and friends who support their new, healthy habits. Of course, they are also encouraged to stay away from people who’d urge them to divert from their path of recovery.
Tailored To Suit The Individual’s Needs:
The road to sobriety can be a very time-consuming process. It’s not a one-and-done and the client’s life goes back to normal. That’s why medications or methods that claim to be quick fixes can turn out to be ineffective. This practice allows each individual to go at their own pace. The patient is given steps on how to break addiction gradually as they carry on the road to recovery. In doing this, the therapist can focus on what makes the individual comfortable and spend time coaxing those steps so that they can have a smooth time recovering.
Become More Goal-driven:
Keeping in mind what one might hope to achieve during their recovery is a good way to stay on track with sobriety. While undergoing this method, the patient is encouraged to create a daily routine and find fun, new hobbies to do. Due to this being go goal-directed, it’s not uncommon for therapists to assign outside homework assignments to help address the mental illness that can come with addiction.
Doesn’t Have To Be Intensive Forever:
With most recovery methods, the process can feel like a lifetime. On the other hand, there are some practices that require the individual to gradually do less and less. As an individual gets stronger, the therapy sessions can go from 3-4 times a week to once a week. Remember, this is all based on the patient’s level of growth.
When it comes to addiction, this recovery process has many benefits. CBT is useful in not only combating drug abuse, but also helps with eating disorders, mental illness, gambling, and any other destructive, addictive habit. This form of therapy can also be used in everyday life to keep those recovering from addiction on a path of healthy communication, self-respect, and rational thinking.