smiling man feels better after cognitive behavioral therapyThose struggling with addiction often face an uphill battle to create true change. Simply abstaining from their drug of choice usually results in repeated setbacks and relapses.


Living an alcohol and drug free life requires a major shift in the way an addict thinks and reacts to his or her environment.


Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT therapy) has proven results for those struggling with addiction. Why? It allows you to refocus and change negative thought patterns leading to addictive behaviors.


Drug and alcohol addiction is a powerful, complex disease. It destroys families, careers, and lives. For many, getting expert help is the only way out of this downward spiral.


Jump to the information most important to you by using the menu below. Use this page as a resource to understand how CBT can help you or your loved one finally break the vicious cycle of addiction:

  1. What is cognitive behavioral therapy?
  2. How does it help change negative patterns of behavior?
  3. How does this therapy help with drug addiction rehab?
  4. Why choose CBT versus other addiction rehab therapies?
  5. Where is there a CBT rehab center in Denver, Colorado?
  6. How long does this kind of therapy take?
  7. Get more information about your treatment needs today.
  8. Call our 24/7 CBT hotline to set up your therapy now.


Have you tried quitting drugs or alcohol by yourself without success? Do you find certain situations or emotions constantly leading you back to substance abuse? When you start making progress, does a difficult period put you right back into the cycle of addiction? You are not alone. Many people battling addiction alone can’t seem to find the path to staying drug free. You don’t need to be ashamed to ask for help. It’s the first brave step of breaking the cycle of addiction and regaining control of your life. Drug treatment centers empower you to understand the disease of addiction and make the necessary steps to change your life for the better. For decades, experienced therapists in rehab centers have used the cognitive behavior approach to therapy as part of a multifaceted approach to battling addiction. Why? Because it works, and it changes lives.


What Is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy?

Your thoughts impact your feelings and behaviors. This is the main principle this specialized therapy was designed to help. If you change your thinking, it will eventually change the way you perceive and react to the world around you.


This form of rehabilitation is psychological treatment, or talk therapy, began in the 1960s with the research of Aaron T. Beck. He found patients with certain mental conditions usually experienced habitual streams of thoughts seeming to come out of nowhere. These “automatic thoughts”  involved ideas about the future, the world, or one’s self. He found when patients were able to identify and evaluate these thoughts, they had a better chance at thinking more realistically. This lead to significant emotional and functional changes in a patient’s life.


What were these automatic thoughts?

Often referred to as cognitive distortions, here are some examples:

  • Mind reading: Assuming you know what others are thinking without actually having any concrete evidence.
  • Catastrophizing: Thinking what has happened or will happen will be so unbearable you won’t be able to deal with it.
  • Blaming: Making someone else the source of your negative feelings instead of taking responsibility for your own thoughts.
  • Emotional reasoning: Letting your feelings shape your version of reality.
  • Labeling: Putting negative attributes to yourself or others without any real evidence.
  • Dichotomous thinking: Having an all-or-nothing attitude towards people, pursuits, or events.
  • Personalizing: Believing you are the main cause of negative events or situations even if others may be to blame.
  • Overgeneralizing: Experiencing a single negative incident and perceiving this negative experience happens all the time.


These automatic thoughts can certainly skew a person’s view of self and the surrounding environment. Unfortunately, most people don’t even realize when they are affected by cognitive distortions. As a result, they can’t see how their emotions and behaviors are affected by these thoughts.


This is why cognitive behavioral treatment can be so effective. A qualified therapist works with individuals to determine their worldview and any possible cognitive distortions. As they build a rapport with a therapist, they start troubleshooting ways to identify and change the automatic thoughts causing them distress leading to negative behaviors.


At Denver Recovery Center, our licensed therapists start by listening to you. They want to know what you’re thinking and what shapes your thoughts. From there, they help you find ways to develop a more positive, reality-based mindset helping with your addiction.


How Does CBT Therapy Work?

Once automatic thoughts and cognitive distortions are identified, the foundation of change is set. This highly individualized process relies heavily on the information exchanged during treatment sessions. From there, a therapist determines the most appropriate interventions based on the unique skills, motivations, and thought patterns of the patient.


Types of cognitive behavioral therapy include:

  • Journaling: Keeping a record of the times you were triggered to use certain thoughts and moods. This technique is used as a way to gather information about how your thoughts form your emotions and actions. Journaling acts as a starting point for additional therapy techniques.
  • Identifying cognitive distortions: By using your journal or talk therapy sessions, the therapist begins to help you identify your cognitive distortions.
  • Cognitive restructuring: Think of this as “resetting the brain.” After you have identified your cognitive distortions, the therapist can help you find the source of your negative thoughts and assumptions. For example, if a parent always had a drink to celebrate a success, you may have the compulsion to reach for a drink in a similar situation. Through training, you can change your brain to find other ways to enjoy the good times.
  • Behavioral experiments: Therapists perform behavioral cognitive therapy experiments helping you test the validity of your thoughts and beliefs. For example, if you believe losing at your favorite sport or game makes you less of a person, you may be challenged to observe your thoughts and actions while accepting defeat. From there, the therapist will help you realize although losing may be difficult, it doesn’t make you less of a person.
  • Mindfulness training: Learning to be “in the moment” through meditation, deep breathing, or other techniques helps you realize you are not your thoughts. In fact, your thoughts and emotions run through you. With this realization, you are better able to detach from your thoughts and identify when they are leading you to negative behaviors.
  • Progressive muscle relaxation (PMR): This technique involves relaxing the whole body by focusing on one area at a time. PMR not only helps with anxiety and cravings, but it can be a great coping skill for aiding in recovery.


These are just a few cognitive behavioral therapy techniques for retraining your brain. Additionally, a qualified therapist will have many other specialized tools to help you retrain your brain.


Our trained staff knows the importance of using this kind of therapy to help those dealing with addiction. From individualized sessions to cognitive behavioral group therapy, experienced therapists use the latest evidence-based techniques when preparing you for a drug-free life.


Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Substance Abuse

CBT treats several mental health issues including anxiety, depression, social isolation, and grief. In addition, many studies have shown it is one of the most effective treatments for addiction either alone or in conjunction with other treatments.


What are the benefits of CBT and why is it so effective? It treats the whole person, not just substance abuse. In many cases, those struggling with addiction have other mental health conditions either diagnosed or unknown at the time. By addressing the underlying causes of emotions and behaviors, those suffering with addiction have a much better chance at remaining drug free.


If some of the cognitive distortions listed above seem familiar for you or a loved one, cognitive behavioral treatment may help. After all, a person’s core beliefs are often the source of addictive behaviors. When a person understands that these thoughts lead to substance abuse, they can make the necessary steps to change.


At Denver Recovery Center, we know this is a powerful intervention tool for creating lasting change. More importantly, we understand it can be even more effective when used with other therapies including dialectical behavioral therapy, eye movement desensitization and reprocessing treatment (EMDR therapy), family therapy, and outdoor therapy. By taking a multi-faceted approach to holistically treat a person struggling with addiction, we help create more success stories.


Why Is This Kind of Therapy So Effective Versus Other Techniques?

Simply put, it’s more than a bandage over a bleeding wound. It finds the root causes of addiction and seeks to change them at the source – your thought patterns.


Using this type of therapy allows you to identify and change your thought process about yourself and the outside world. This allows for a more rational approach to life where you could see how cognitive distortions play a major role in your thoughts and behaviors.


By slowing down and learning to control your thinking, you have a much better chance at battling your addictions successfully.


If you feel overwhelmed about your life, CBT can help you create better outcomes by working on proven techniques that change the brain.


Our specialized recovery center uses proven techniques to help you live a drug-free life. Our experienced therapists can empower you to finally take charge of your life.


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Is There Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Near Me in Colorado?

If you believe these techniques can benefit you, Denver Recovery Center is conveniently located in Broomfield, Colorado, right next to Denver. The scenic backdrop and exclusive outdoor therapy opportunities available at our facility make it a truly unique place to seek treatment.


If you aren’t from the Denver area but feel a change of scenery may help your battle with addiction, we would love to hear from you. We accept people from all over the country.  


We offer a range of drug treatment programs including residential, partial hospitalization, intensive outpatient, and outpatient. We will get you the help you need at the right level of treatment.


How Long Does Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Last?

Have you ever tried starting a new routine? At first, a new routine seems like a hassle and you need a ton of motivation to get started. In time, the routine becomes part of your daily habit and gets easier as you move forward.


Conversely, do you remember the first time you tried your drug of choice? At first you only did it on weekends or while with others. At some point, your drug use became more than casual. It eventually consumed more and more of your time.


The point is, both positive and negative habits form over time.


Just like any lasting change, restructuring the brain takes time. While some may adapt quickly, others can take longer. With addiction and mental health care, pinpointing an absolute answer is difficult. Some experts suggest about 16-weeks of cognitive behavioral therapy sessions are necessary. This number varies on the person, their condition(s), and motivation to change.


Our evidenced-based therapy combined with other rehabilitation techniques provide the most effective treatment. This means you’ll get the help and skills necessary to start enjoying your drug-free life in the shortest time possible.


Get More Information About Our Facilities and Therapies Today

Contact us for more information. Seeking treatment may seem daunting. You may wonder what people will think or how your family will manage while you’re getting treatment. Many people who already went through treatment had the same concerns. Initially, it may be uncomfortable or seem like a struggle. However, in the end you will realize treatment was the best answer for improving your life.


Don’t waste another day! Life is precious. Give yourself the one gift that will help you turn your life around and make the first brave step today.


Denver Recovery Center offers a variety of treatment options catering to you or your loved one’s specific needs. Learn more about our wide range of services and how we can help you.


Our 24/7 Hotline Can Get You Started Right Now

Call us anytime at (844) 307-2955 and get the help you need. Don’t put this off thinking tomorrow will be a better day. Make today better. Our non-judgmental staff is here to answer your questions and concerns. We can can guide you on to the path of lasting recovery.


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