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CBT Techniques for Anxiety

anxietyTalking therapies are generally considered the most helpful of all CBT techniques for anxiety because individuals are able to effectively change their thought processes and reduce irrational thinking with better anxiety control. Techniques that work with different delivery options are adopted in effective psychological treatments.

Therapies or techniques dealing with anxiety work with self-help and psychological treatments under the supervision of trained professionals.

Techniques followed by CBT4Panic involve online consultation, group environments, and online programs. In all these functions, patients have an active role to play in achieving quick recovery from anxiety. They learn skills they can use to foster better emotional control for the rest of their lives.

1. Interpersonal Therapy (IPT)
Interpersonal therapy (IPT) helps individuals to get actively involved in the recovery process. This therapy addresses interpersonal issues in life leading to depression in adolescents, adults, and older adults.

Adopted skills include reading more about the problem, making notes of symptoms between visits to the psychotherapist, and wholeheartedly completing home assignments that contain treatment procedures. The treatment is supportive and is conducted over the short-term.

Sessions begin with identification of the individual’s interpersonal experiences and episodes of depression.

Skills are developed over each therapeutic session and practiced at home, leading to improvement in emotional control. IPT is usually conducted in 12 to 16 hour-long weekly sessions.

2. Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT)
This CBT technique for anxiety is used extensively in psychological treatment. ACT is a therapy that uses top strategies of mindfulness and acceptance.

In other words, situations are created where individuals experience things without using their judgement and live in the moment. These situations bring about behavioral and commitment changes that help them cope with sensations, unwanted thoughts, and feelings.

A psychotherapist will be able to identify behavioral patterns and thought processes in individuals that help them deal with anxiety.

Once individuals begin to understand how unhelpful factors develop, they learn to replace unhelpful patterns with behavioral traits that improve coping skills and reduce anxiety.

3. Exposure Therapy
This technique uses encouragement to show patients the differences between productive worry and unproductive anxiety.

For example, a patient might constantly think of catastrophic situations happening in his life. The situation gets out of hand when he begins to fear the worst and anticipate out-of-control situations.

CBT techniques for anxiety help patients focus on solving problems and develop rational thinking with active participation in avoiding situations that cause anxiety. In practice, individuals are exposed to objects or situations that cause fear, thereby reducing their sensitivity to them over a period of time.

This technique is especially effective in dealing with phobias and obsessive-compulsive disorders.

4. Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR)
When specific conditions are created, eye movements are known to reduce the intensity of unwanted thoughts.

EMDR directly affects the way the brain processes information leading to a situation where the affected individual begins to visualize disturbing thoughts in a less stressful manner.

Rapid eye movements can create a situation similar to a positive dream. This technique is highly effective in treating post-traumatic sleep disorders, phobias, and panic attacks.

Self-Help Techniques
Psychoeducation is a process through which individuals learn about anxiety and develop strategies that help overcome it.

1. Relaxation Strategies
Progressive muscle relaxation and calm breathing are strategies that help individuals relax their bodies.

Sensations like shallow breathing and muscle tension often lead to depression, so individuals must be able to identify these symptoms and learn to relax.

They can stretch different muscle groups and initiate calmer breathing with intent. Methods used as part of relaxation strategies include meditation, massage, and listening to soothing music.

2. Realistic Thinking
This self-help technique is used to identify negative thinking and replace it with balanced thinking. Individuals feel better when they are able to expel unhelpful thoughts by understanding their roles in this world without resorting to excessive positive or negative behavior.

For example, an unrealistic thought process leads to situations where individuals feel they are wrong. They cannot cope with these situations and tend to mess things up.

On the other hand, a balanced thought process helps them understand that mistakes are possible but can be rectified through learning.

One of the basic steps adopted by CBT4Panic is to pay attention to the thought processes and help patients challenge negative thoughts when they arise.

Overestimating danger or anticipating catastrophe is a negative trend, and the best way to tackle these types of situations is to analyze rationally, then decide how to achieve positive thinking by challenging these unhelpful thoughts with CBT techniques for anxiety in a realistic and balanced manner.

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