Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is an evidence-based talking therapy proven to help treat a wide range of emotional and physical health conditions in adults, young people and children. CBT looks at how we think about a situation and how this affects the way we act.  In turn our actions can affect how we think and feel.  The therapist and client work together in changing the client’s behaviours, or their thinking patterns, or both of these.

Research of CBT has been carefully reviewed by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) and they recommend it in the treatment of:

  • anxiety disorders (including panic attacks and post-traumatic stress disorder)

  • depression

  • obsessive compulsive disorder

  • schizophrenia and psychosis

  • bipolar disorder

There is also credible evidence that CBT is helpful in treating many other conditions, including:

  • chronic fatigue

  • behavioural difficulties in children

  • anxiety disorders in children

  • chronic pain

  • physical symptoms without a medical diagnosis

  • sleep difficulties

  • anger management

CBT can be offered in individual sessions with a therapist or as part of a group.  The number of CBT sessions you need depends on the difficulty you need help with.  CBT is mainly concerned with how you think and act now, instead of looking at and getting help with difficulties in your past, although it may be helpful for some clients to explore their past briefly as some problems may be caused by learned coping mechanisms from their childhood, which may now not be working in adulthood.

You and your therapist will discuss your specific difficulties and set goals for you to achieve.  CBT is not a quick fix.  It involves hard work during and between sessions.  Your therapist will not tell you what to do. Instead they will help you decide what difficulties you want to work on in order to help you improve your situation.  Your therapist will be able to advise you on how to continue using CBT techniques in your daily life after your treatment ends.