Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) helps alcohol and cocaine addicts incorporate relapse prevention tactics into their everyday lives. Cognitive-behavioural methods rely on the idea that learning responses play an important role in the formation of destructive behavioral patterns.
CBT is based upon the premise that there is a biological basis for drug addiction, which explains the need to address brain chemistry through cognitive therapy. The use of drugs can be traced back to the early days of human evolution when our bodies responded to threats or danger through the use of chemicals that increase the production of dopamine. Dopamine plays a central role in reward and emotion, which may explain why so many people have addictive behaviors, including drug addiction.
CBT is based upon the theory that there are two systems of brain activity that affect the development and maintenance of addictive behaviors. One system produces a series of conditioned responses that encourage drug use. These reactions include cravings for food, sex, substances, money, and social relationships. Another set of systems causes these conditioned responses to be triggered by negative feedback from the body such as stress, frustration and other negative emotions.
The use of CBT has been shown to be very effective in helping drug addicts overcome these behavioral patterns and their related feelings. Cognitive therapy can help individuals overcome the fear of withdrawal and its physical manifestations. This process has been described as a “reset” of the mind, where negative emotions and thoughts are replaced with positive ones. It also helps individuals recognize their negative impulses and replace them with new ones that will increase their chances of success.
CBT also helps patients gain a deeper understanding of the nature of their addictive behaviors. This helps them work toward finding alternative ways to cope with stressful situations, such as those surrounding the need to use cocaine. Through this process, patients learn how to avoid the triggers and develop healthy coping strategies to deal with stress, anxiety and stress that come with everyday life. The use of therapy helps them develop a self-awareness that allows them to recognize and deal with their cravings, negative feelings and thoughts associated with drug use.
Unlike most medications for drug addiction, CBT is considered a viable treatment alternative for cocaine relapse prevention. Although not quite as effective as inpatient programs like Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous, it does have the advantage of being a non-invasive and easy process that can be completed over a period of weeks, months or even years. If used properly, it can lead to a significant reduction of the number of drug use-related cravings and behaviors.
With cognitive behavioral therapy, you will learn how to change your thinking and behavior through a structured, gradual and consistent approach. The goal is to develop healthy coping skills that will help you overcome the feelings and thoughts that fuel your drug addiction.
CBT is an option that should be considered by anyone who is thinking of using drugs, whether they are an addict or not. It can be especially effective in treating cocaine users who are at the risk of developing compulsive use-dependent patterns.
CBT involves a series of sessions, usually lasting for at least four weeks, to address various aspects of substance abuse and addiction. A certified therapist will begin with a review of the individual’s personality and any underlying psychological issues. Then they’ll move on to identifying the primary causes of their use-related behaviors. They will then work to change these behaviors.
During the cognitive behavioral therapy sessions, the therapist will assess the client’s feelings and thoughts as well as the behaviors. and reactions that may be leading up to the current crisis. The focus is on identifying and eliminating these underlying beliefs and behaviors. Once the behaviors and beliefs are identified, the client will be provided with a new set of goals.
The first step is to identify a set of “questions” that will serve as the foundation for developing new behaviors and questions that will help clients decide what they want to accomplish. Once these are identified, the therapist will help clients develop new answers for these questions. They may also want to create an action plan to get there.
CBT may also provide a set of “rewards” that clients can earn. These can include either positive experiences with loved ones or rewards such as vacations or other things of personal significance. In addition, they may receive support from their friends or family in the form of counseling or other resources.