Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Essay Writing Guide 2022
Table of Contents
Our cognitive behavioral therapy essay writing Guide is well crafted to point you in the right direction in essay writing. A cognitive-behavioral therapy essay focuses on defining cognitive behavioral therapy, what it is used for, and the techniques that the therapy utilizes for treatment. Ask any student and they will tell you that in the course of a student’s academic life, one will have written more essays than any other kind of writing assignment. Essays can be on various topics which usually range from simple to complex topics.
Take, for instance, you have been asked to write an essay on cognitive behavioral therapy. What should you include in your cognitive behavioral therapy essay? What are the topics that you should break down in your cognitive behavioral therapy essay? Below is a breakdown of what an essay on cognitive behavioral therapy would look like:
Introduction of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Essay
Cognitive-behavioral therapy refers to a combination of both cognitive and behavioral theories of human behavior, peer influences, and psychopathology. Cognitive-behavioral therapy seeks to build skills in individuals which make individuals more aware of their situations and how they influence their thoughts and emotions.
History of cognitive-behavioral therapy in an essay
As the name suggests cognitive behavioral therapy is an amalgamation of cognitive and behavioral theories of human behavior that target human intervention. Originally, CBT was used in treating depression. It has now been adapted to treat personality disorders, bipolar disorders, anxiety disorders, substance use disorders, and schizophrenia. Cognitive-behavioral therapy was developed in the 1960s by Aaron Beck who blended cognitive therapy and behavioral therapy. The assumptions of CBT were first developed by Albert Ellis before Aaron Beck came in and altered cognitive therapy. The strategies and techniques that encompass cognitive behavioral therapy tell of its integrative history.
What Is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy?
Cognitive-behavioral therapy refers to an approach to solving problems among individuals who have distress issues and those with maladaptive behavior patterns. Mostly, these problems arise due to negative and harsh thinking patterns among these individuals. Close examination of these thinking patterns reveals inaccuracies also famously known as cognitive distortions. Cognitive-behavioral therapy focuses on helping individuals identify these negative thoughts and replace them with positive thoughts.
Principles of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy to Include In Your Essay
The core principles that CBT finds basis on include:
- Psychological problems due to unhelpful thinking patterns
- Psychological problems due to learned unhelpful behaviors
- Patients suffering from psychological problems cope by eliminating symptoms
Unlike traditional therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy is active, directive, and usually on a short-term basis. The main goals of cognitive-behavioral therapy are:
- To identify problems and goals between the patient and therapist
- Establishment of a clear agenda for every therapy session
- Issuance of self-help homework for practice and assessing progress
- To ensure there are objective measures of outcome.
To achieve these goals, the therapist comes up with viable strategies both cognitive and behavioral to help with the suffering of a client. Among modern psychotherapies, cognitive therapy is the most researched. There are hundreds of studies that have been undertaken to look into the benefits of cognitive-behavioral therapy.
Who Needs Cognitive Behavioral Therapy?
It has been shown that cognitive-behavioral therapy helps with reducing symptoms of anxiety and depression, and there are minimal chances of relapse. Also, cognitive behavioral therapy helps people with the following disorders:
- Bipolar disorder
- Substance abuse difficulties
- Social anxiety
- Anger problems
- Post-traumatic stress disorder
- Obsessive-compulsive disorder
- Generalized anxiety disorder
- Panic attacks
- Medical disorders
How Long Does Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Take?
Usually, the cognitive behavioral therapy model is on a short-term basis. The usual duration of treatment lasts between 8 to 15 sessions. However, the duration of treatment for a person depends on their unique circumstance and situation. Some patients respond to treatment faster, while some patients require more therapy sessions before they can be okay. When seeking cognitive behavioral therapy, the therapist determines how many sessions one needs for their condition. After one has completed their treatment sessions, they can take extra sessions, also known as booster sessions. The booster sessions help patients not to relapse and help in the further development of self-help skills.
What Happens In Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Sessions?
Here is a breakdown of what cognitive behavioral therapy sessions usually entail:
The First Therapy Session
The most important thing in cognitive behavioral therapy is for a therapist to establish a connection with a patient. That can only happen through open communication between these two parties. During the first therapy session, the therapist can assess whether cognitive behavioral therapy is the right treatment approach that a patient should take. The therapist sets an individualized treatment plan with individualized goals that they need to accomplish.
The Second Therapy Session
If the therapist determines that cognitive-behavioral therapy is an effective treatment method for the patient’s condition, they begin the therapy sessions. The second therapy session entails the identification of behaviors and thoughts that cause problems in the patient. The therapist usually expounds on the case formulation they will take throughout the therapy treatment. Usually, a case formulation consists of:
- A list of the patient’s issues and symptoms
- Thinking distortions and behavior patterns that cause problems
- Realistic goals to accomplish with the treatment
- A spelled-out treatment plan that they need to follow
Subsequent Therapy Sessions
The next therapy sessions are similar in structure but vary in content and are progressive. The patient learns the different behavioral and emotional self-control skills that they can use to address their issues. On the other hand, the therapist is directive and active in addressing the issues of the patient. The structure that these subsequent therapy sessions follow is as follows:
- The patient and therapist have an agenda that is unique for the therapy session. Every agenda should seek to solve a particular issue.
- The therapist chooses one or a combination of experimental, behavioral, and experimental strategies to solve the particular issue.
- The two parties review the therapy session and set out a ‘to-do’ task that might prove helpful for the specific issue.
Nearly the end of treatment, patients learn various relapse-prevention techniques to help them handle any issues that may arise in the future.
Is There Use Of Medication In Cognitive Behavioral Therapy?
Although cognitive-behavioral therapy is a wholesome treatment method, some problems can be resolved better alongside using medication. Mostly, if a patient was already on medication, cognitive behavioral therapy helps with the condition.
How to Assess The Progress Of A Patient?
In cognitive-behavioral therapy, there are two key features in assessing a patient’s progress; feedback and measurement. As the patient continues with the therapy sessions, the therapist can tell how they are responding to therapy based on the feedback they are giving. Secondly, a therapist can use psychological tools such as mood scales to assess how a patient is doing. When the therapist notices any obstacles to the treatment, they look for solutions to the obstacle for the sake of the patient’s wellbeing.
Can You Do CBT On Yourself?
Cognitive-behavioral therapy helps treat anxiety among other disorders. However, some people cannot access a CBT therapist to walk with them. Also, in some cases, the person may not have the financial resources to see a therapist. Fortunately, you can undertake cognitive behavioral therapy using internet-based treatment or self-help books.
In cognitive-behavioral therapy, one of the goals is that you can become your therapist as you will practice skills after treatment. You can as well combine self-help treatment with limited time with a therapist. That way, you can enjoy the benefits of both sides.
Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy for Anxiety Disorders
Other therapies work for anxiety disorders; however, no therapy can match the effectiveness of cognitive-behavioral therapy in treating anxiety disorders. Majorly, cognitive behavioral therapy is useful in treating anxiety disorders such as phobias, panic disorders, generalized anxiety disorder, and social anxiety disorder.
Cognitive-behavioral therapy addresses negative thoughts that a person has and how they view the world. Going by the name, cognitive behavioral therapy involves two major components; behavioral therapy and cognitive therapy. Cognitive therapy addresses negative thoughts and how they contribute to anxiety while behavioral therapy addresses one’s behaviors and reactions when in situations that cause anxiety.
The way that cognitive behavioral therapy works are that the thoughts of a person affect how one feels. In short, a situation does not influence how one feels. Instead, the person of a person towards a situation affects the way one feels.
How Do I Practice CBT for Anxiety?
Overcoming an anxiety disorder requires your time and commitment. When undertaking cognitive behavioral therapy to overcome anxiety, you need to stick with the treatment plan and follow the therapist’s recommendation to the letter.
Cognitive-behavioral therapy is very good in handling anxiety disorders, and you will enjoy the benefits if you stick through the treatment plan. You can as well make positive changes to your lifestyle to support the therapy process. Scrutinize your lifestyle and assess any activity in your life that triggers anxiety. Some of the positive moves to make include:
Educate Yourself on Anxiety
You cannot solve a problem that you do not know exists. You cannot overcome an anxiety disorder through education, but you can benefit more from therapy when you are educated in anxiety.
Build Connections with People
Loneliness sets the stage for anxiety. You can minimize this by reaching out to other people around you. Connect with family members, friends, colleagues, or even people in a support group. Opening up to people you trust lowers your vulnerability to anxiety.
Embrace a Healthy Lifestyle
Healthy lifestyle habits such as regular exercise and meditation will help you deal with symptoms that could lead to anxiety. In that case, you will avoid the use of substances such as alcohol and drugs to cope with anxiety.
An Example of Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy for Your Essay
Take, for instance; you have received an invitation to a big party. There are three ways you can view the invitation, and each view will affect your emotions.
Situation: You have a party invitation
Thought: Parties are fun. You love attending parties and having fun.
Thought: Parties can be too engaging. You prefer spending time indoors.
Thought: You do not know what to do at parties. You do not like the idea of the party.
What Are The Techniques Of Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy?
Cognitive-behavioral therapy techniques refer to evidence-based methods to change behaviors, thoughts, and feelings to improve life functioning. These techniques are informed by psychological research and revealed to be effective in handling psychological and mood disorders. Here are the common cognitive behavioral therapy techniques:
Some problems in people occur due to the lack of appropriate skills to achieve specific set goals. Skills training is an effective technique to handle problems that result due to a deficit in skills. Some of the areas that skills training works for include communication training, social skills training, and assertiveness training. Skills training happens through role-playing, direct instruction, or modeling.
This technique originates from Buddhism, and its goal is to help individuals disengage from thinking negative thoughts. The technique helps people focus on the things in the now. Mindfulness is the cutting edge of psychotherapy practice.
This technique is ideal for individuals who have a hard time finishing a task when the task is new to them. This technique helps a person master a less daunting task than the task at hand. Take, for instance, it is easier for a student to learn division when they have mastered addition and subtraction. Similarly, if you have rehearsed a certain behavior, it is easier to manage difficult behavior.
This technique helps individuals who have tasks that they should be doing. Scheduling behaviors improve the likelihood of getting activities done. People suffering from depression in that it affects them from undertaking tasks or those that suffer from procrastination can benefit from this cognitive-behavioral technique.
Graded Exposure Assignments
This CBT technique works by having individuals approach their fears systematically. Fear causes individuals to avoid certain situations. When an individual avoids situations that cause fear in them, they can handle anxiety. However, when exposed to such a situation, fear becomes a threat. Systematic exposure helps people manage situations that instill fears. Graded exposure is the most effective cognitive-behavioral therapy treatment technique for anxiety disorders.
Cognitive restructuring is also famous as thought challenging and refers to the process of handling the negative thinking patterns that you may have, and that lead to your anxiety. You should then replace the negative thoughts with positive ones.
4 Steps of Cognitive Restructuring
When engaging in cognitive restructuring, you need to follow four steps which are as follows:
The process of cognitive restructuring starts with one being conscious of their thoughts. That means that you need to consider your thoughts and the thinking process. You cannot change something that you are not aware of. Consider writing down your thoughts for a certain duration of time, and then you can begin exploring your thoughts.
Once you have a list of your thoughts, you need to sort out the thoughts in regard to rationality. It is only through evaluating your thoughts that you can identify healthy thoughts and those that are unhealthy. You need to be honest with yourself when evaluating your thoughts for the best results.
After identifying a thought to be unhealthy, you need to find out why it is unhealthy. That will call for one to ask some questions such as: why is the thought bat? Is that thought true? How often does that thought come up? The main idea of this step is to identify why thoughts are cognitive distortions and reality.
Replace the Cognitive Distortion
You are incomplete if you only do away with the cognitive distortion. You need to get a rational thought in place of the cognitive distortion. However, remember that thoughts are automatically habitual. The task would be not to stop the cognitive distortion, but instead, to be on the lookout for the cognitive distortion and replace it with rational thought. That will require a lot of self-awareness and reflection before you can fully master the art of replacing cognitive distortion. A professional will help you with how to go about replacing cognitive distortions.
It does not matter the kind of assignment you have on cognitive behavioral therapy in your psychology class. The type of writing assignment that your professor may give you may range from a CBT and depression essay, a cognitive behavioral therapy research paper, a dissertation on cognitive behavioral therapy, a cognitive-behavioral theory essay, or a cognitive behavioral therapy dissertation. You can also get an assignment on a cognitive-behavioral family therapy essay or a reflective essay on CBT.
Each of the tasks on cognitive behavioral therapy will require you to follow the specific format and writing guidelines. These guidelines and format can be hard to stick by when one is not well conversant with them. Fortunately, you can obtain expert help from Myhomeworkwriters.com for any assignment you may have besides a cognitive behavioral therapy essay. My Homework Writers is known to have the best writing team on board who work tirelessly to deliver high-quality and zero-plagiarism papers to their clients.