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Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is a psychological therapy that has been shown in research studies to be effective in treating a range of psychological problems.

For example it is used in the treatment of Depression, Anxiety, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), Personality Disorders, Chronic Pain and Self-Esteem Issues. CBT is recommended by the National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) in their guidelines for the treatment of most mental health problems (

CBT recognises that negative thoughts can affect mood and well-being, and can become unrealistic and unhelpful.

CBT therapists help individuals to recognise and make changes to unhelpful thinking patterns (cognitions), feelings, and behaviours, by identifying how these three factors affect each other and then developing more realistic alternative ways of responding and coping.

This is achieved in the therapy by questioning, challenging and making changes to unhelpful thoughts and assumptions, facing previously avoided situations, and developing new ways of coping with difficult emotions. The process of change requires a good collaboration between the therapist and client, and homework assignments are an essential part of the therapy.

Although CBT concentrates mainly on the present, it may be necessary at times to talk about past issues as this may improve understanding of current difficulties.

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