man learns difference between cbt vs dbt

Thinking About CBT vs DBT? Which is Better for Substance Use Disorder Treatment?

Talk therapy can come in many forms. During addiction treatment, you may encounter Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) or Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT). Both CBT and DBT can be part of holistic addiction treatment programs. Finding a DBT program or a Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Program in Massachusetts can provide insight into your addiction and support for your recovery.

What is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)?

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is an evidence-based type of talk therapy. Psychotherapists use it to help people with behavioral health disorders. A certified, trained counselor will work with you for a specific number of sessions in CBT. The sessions will address your specific needs and concerns.

CBT can help you to:

  • Identify ways to manage your emotions
  • Resolve conflicts in your relationships
  • Cope with grief and loss
  • Learn coping techniques for stressful situations
  • Manage behavioral health symptoms, including substance use disorders, depression, and anxiety

CBT can help you to explore your feelings and experiences. It’s not always easy. You can feel drained after talking about painful, emotionally-charged experiences. You may have heard about exposure therapy. It’s a specialized form of CBT that can help people with phobias and OCD. Exposure therapy gradually exposes people with phobias or OCD to situations they fear. The process helps them to confront fear and reduce repetitive behaviors.

What is Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)?

Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) is sometimes considered a part of CBT, but it was initially created to help people with borderline personality disorder (BPD). People with BPD are at risk for impulsive behavior, substance use disorders, and other serious negative life consequences. You may benefit from DBT during a dual diagnosis treatment program, which addresses addiction and any co-occurring mental health disorders.

The “Dialectical” in this model of therapy refers to the way DBT brings two opposing tendencies together. The dialectic in DBT is between acceptance and change. DBT therapists believe that bringing the two opposing tendencies together is helpful. They think this dialectic creates more improvement in health and behavioral symptoms than addressing either tendency by itself.

DBT can combine the following elements:

  • Individual therapy
  • Group skills development
  • Phone coaching
  • A team approach to health care and recovery

DBT is often a good choice for clients with high-risk behaviors and many challenges in recovery. When considering CBT vs DBT, both forms of therapy can help improve behavioral health.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Vs Dialectical Behavior Therapy: Which is Best for Rehab?

CBT vs DBT? Which is right for your recovery? Your treatment plan will take your history of substance use and other treatments into consideration. Your unique needs may mean you can use both types of therapy to stop using drugs and build a strong recovery.

Substance use disorders are complex. They involve your body, your mind, and your relationships with family and friends. You don’t need to choose between CBT vs DBT. You may benefit from both types of therapy. DBT is an outgrowth of CBT that focuses on your acceptance of things you cannot change. It also helps you to make changes that you can to improve your health and begin a strong recovery. CBT may help you to deal with trauma and build coping skills.

Both types of psychotherapy play a strong role in helping people to recover from using drugs and alcohol. They can also help you during a residential drug rehab program, outpatient treatment, and aftercare programs and services. Both CBT and DBT could help you to cope with relapse triggers and continue your sobriety.

Studies conducted by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) show that people don’t need to choose CBT vs DBT. Both forms of therapy can help you to heal from drug and alcohol use disorders. Both types of therapy can be combined successfully with medication-assisted treatment (MAT) for opioid and alcohol use disorders. They can play a role in the early days of recovery through extended care and relapse prevention. Recovery is a lifelong process. Contact Washburn House at 855.298.3104 to begin your recovery and return to health.

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