Cbt Essay

5247 Words Sep 4th, 2012 21 Pages
An Introduction to Cognitive Behavioural Therapy: A Case Study Focusing on a Patient with Generalised Anxiety Disorder.

This essay will provide an understanding of the principles of Cognitive Behaviour Therapy and its application to a case study of someone who has mild to moderate health problems. It aims to critically evaluate the principles and philosophy that underpin cognitive behaviour theory, whist demonstrating an understanding of fundamental cognitive behavioural strategies, and finally to critically appraise the evidence base of appropriate treatment methods. For the purpose of the assignment and in accordance to British Association for Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies (BABCP, 2010:7) Standards of Conduct,
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CBT theorists therefore imply that if an individual can change the way that they think about an event they can feel differently about it, which in turn will impact on their reaction. For example, if an individual is exposed to a feared event and they are able to cope effectively; their anxiety will reduce when faced with the same situation in the future. However, if they perceive that they have been unsuccessful in coping then their anxiety could increase.

Clark et al (1999) identified three levels of cognition which underpin the practice of CBT: full consciousness, automatic thoughts and schemas. Consciousness relates to an individual being able to make rationale decisions of which they are fully aware of. Automatic thoughts are more independent and may not be accurate in content, but they appear in everyday thinking. Schemas are the deepest level of cognitions which develop from childhood and help the individual develop rules for life. (Wright, 2006).

Beck (1979) argues that individuals are more likely to be influenced by their cognitive biases and as a result they tend to interpret life events in an exaggerated, personalized, and negative manner. It is the immediate NATs that are associated with problematic behaviour and disturbing emotions. Leahy (2003) suggests that NATs can contain cognitive distortions such as mind reading, personalizing, labelling, fortune telling, catastrophising, or dichotomous

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