Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapy (CBT) is a relatively short term intervention and is considered the most effective treatment for many
mental health problems; including anxiety, phobias and obsessions; specific phobias,
social phobia, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), generalised anxiety disorder
(GAD), panic disorder, panic attacks, impulse control disorders (ICD), post traumatic stress
disorder (PTSD), sexual dysfunction, relationship difficulties, health anxiety, eating
disorders and mood disorders such as bi-
polar disorder and depression.
CBT represents a unique category in psychological interventions as it originates
from both the behavioural and cognitive psychological models of human function, these
include theories of emotion, developmental (both normal and abnormal) and psychopathology.
Behaviour therapy, the earliest of the cognitive and behavioural psychotherapies,
is based on the clinical applications of extensively researched theories of behaviour,
foremost of which are the roles of classical and operant conditioning. Behavioural
approaches do not necessarily investigate the role of cognition and cognitive processes
in the development or maintenance of emotional disorders. Cognitive therapy is based
on the clinical application of the more recent, but also extensively researched,
prominent role of cognitions in the development of emotional disorders.
‘Cognitive Behavioural Therapy’ is not a therapy per se, but a collection of therapies
including behaviour therapy, cognitive therapy, and other therapies based on the
pragmatic combination of the behavioural and cognitive theories.
“Cognitive behavioural therapy is the most pragmatic therapy there is and one of
the few endorsed by the Government because it actually has a measurable success rate.”
Amy Jenkins, The Independent
Mental illness is now nearly a half of all ill health suffered by people in Britain aged under 65, and accounts for 23% of the total burden of disease.