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Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy: The Most Effective Approach to Curing Anxiety/ Panic Disorder

Posted Nov 09 2009 4:40am
Cognitive-behavioural Therapy (CBT) is differently understood today than how it was perceived in the 1970's and 1980's. Before, it was an imperfect combination between mental response and behaviour. Now there is a full relationship between cognitive level and the attitude of the person. It incorporates the principles in human behavioural responses, basic biology, and the cognitive process that affects anxiety. Experts believe that anxiety is a continuum process that all individuals can possibly experience. Origins and causes of anxiety and panic disorders may vary depending on the individual's personality, character, culture and family background.

Cognitive-behavioural therapy is one type of psychological treatment that is a best alternative for medicine and drugs to some extent. This is one form of structured problem solving. The technique basically aims to change the way the person thinks. It applies rationality and logic to the experience and evaluates thoroughly the nature of any feared situation. Some of the techniques include exposure to phobias and relaxation of the mind.

To some it can be done through self-help but does require special training and proper education. A guiding psychologist, psychiatrist, therapist will make the process more effective. Others require 10 or more session to get the best results.

The process may include a person understanding his own fears and breaking them down into manageable parts. He is then asked to slowly get exposed to them at a certain grade or level until he overcomes them and gradually lessens panic attacks.

This type of therapy emphasizes the importance of focusing on the experience or process rather than on the effects of anxiety. It is known to be the "mindful" approach as to layman's term. One needs to control his feelings and thoughts by facing the fear squarely. Through this process the person can realistically perceive what is actually happening and consciously dictate himself if there is actual danger or just an imagination. Once a conscious effort is exerted confidence is developed and there is an expected progress in overcoming fear that causes anxiety.

The "inner dialogues" or "negative thoughts" that recur in the mind are the key factors that sap the confidence to face fears. Once an individual identify this phenomenon, he can begin to make a choice to replace them with compassion and positive outlook until he can live life in a positive way.

So far, cognitive behavioural therapy is considered to be one of the most effective approaches in dealing and curing anxiety. It is accepted by many to be the most consistent and long-lasting technique.

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