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Anxiety disorders can leave you feeling overwhelmed, fearful, and paranoid. Obsessive, anxious thoughts can keep you up a night and unrelenting worry can disturb your day. Luckily, you don’t have to continue to live with debilitating anxiety and fear. Research shows that cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) can help you overcome anxiety. Unlike anxiety medication, which merely treats the symptoms of anxiety, CBT can actually help you:
In fact, out of the many different types of therapies used to treat anxiety, cognitive behavioral therapy is one of the most effective, leading approaches.
Cognitive behavioral therapy is a form of talk therapy. But instead of focusing on the past as most therapy sessions do, CBT focuses on the present, teaching you how to respond to stressors in a way that can ease your distress. In the CBT approach, thoughts, emotions, and behaviors are interconnected. This means that how you think and feel influences what you do. At the same time, this also means that changing the way you think can also change the way you feel, and ultimately, how you behave.
CBT works by helping you make sense of overwhelming problems. Remember, thinking productively about a challenging situation can help you behave more appropriately. CBT helps you approach difficult experiences in a healthy way by teaching you how to break challenges down into small parts.
In CBT, problems are typically broken down into 5 main aspects:
As you focus on the facts regarding a particular situation, you can begin to list, analyze and evaluate your thoughts. Those thoughts are like a pair of glasses. They determine how you feel emotionally and how your body responds physically (in the case of anxiety, often with rapid breathing, quickened heartbeat, headache, or chest pains.). Those emotions and physical responses determine your behavior, or what you do next.
By breaking distressing situations down like this, CBT can teach you how to solve problems and deal with distressing situations in a constructive way, making you less vulnerable to emotional overwhelm and anxiety.
Anxiety is almost always triggered by unhelpful or negative thoughts. Cognitive behavioral therapy specifically helps anxiety by teaching you to combat those types of thoughts. This process involves 2 main components:
Essentially, CBT helps anxious people realize that anxiety doesn’t occur as a result of distressing situations and experiences, but rather their perception of those situations. Here are 3 specific ways CBT helps anxious people change their perception of challenging circumstances.
When your mind is full of anxious thoughts, you might feel stressed and overwhelmed. These feelings can cause you to overreact or avoid various situations and people. Luckily, CBT can teach you how to manage, combat, and change anxious thoughts. The process includes the following 3 steps:
Anxiety is an intense feeling of discomfort that typically drives people to avoid whatever triggers their fear. This means that anxiety is often defined by avoidance. Luckily, CBT can help you maintain a sense of control and confidence when you’re dealing with difficult situations.
Exposure therapy, a component of CBT, gradually exposes you to the situations and objects you fear. At first, your therapist might ask you to make a list of things that give you anxiety. Once you’ve done that, your therapist may use pictures, videos, and sounds to help slowly expose you to that object or situation. Repeated exposure can help you begin to feel an increased sense of control over the situation. As you feel more in control of the situation, your anxiety should start to diminish. In time, you can begin to use exposure therapy for more difficult situations. Eventually, exposure therapy can help you tackle all the situations you wish to conquer.
In addition to teaching you how to identify, combat, and change negative thinking, CBT can also help you learn how to react to situations in a healthy way. CBT does this by teaching you a number of coping skills that help you relax before you react. Some of the most common CBT coping skills include:
Untreated anxiety can significantly impact your wellbeing. But here at StoneRidge Centers, we’re proud to offer expert brain science and evidence-based therapies that can effectively treat anxiety disorders.
Cognitive behavioral therapy can help you obtain and maintain optimal mental health. Contact us today if you’re ready to deal with anxiety in a healthy, constructive, and productive way.
Because mental health and addiction concerns are so often interconnected, we utilize research-based approaches with evidence-based outcomes that promote overall healing and recovery.
This low-impact magnetic stimulation activates neurons inside the brain, relieving symptoms associated with depression and anxiety.
Using brain scanning and readings, we create a map of our patients’ brains, helping us develop more targeted and effective treatments.
This process assists patients in visualizing their own brain functionality through continuous EEG readings.
We use carefully monitored doses of Spravato to help patients struggling with complex mental health disorders, including severe depression.
Patients use this practice to help reframe intrusive or negative thought patterns and develop coping techniques for long-term recovery.
This practice helps patients learn to regulate emotions, communicate more effectively, and process their own thoughts and feelings..
Licensed and trained therapists guide patients through this technique for managing stress and anxiety on an ongoing basis.
Patients experience one-on-one therapy sessions with a licensed therapist to provide a safe and private place to recover and heal.
Patients can practice the skills and techniques they have learned in treatment with others in a safe, therapist-guided space.
5940 E. Copper Hill Dr. Ste B & E, Prescott Valley, AZ. 86314
We exercise progressive, leading brain science in our treatment approach for patients in our community and across the country who are struggling with mental health and addiction challenges.