One of the therapeutic approaches we use in our teen treatment plans is Adolescent Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, which is an evidence-based approach, shown to be successful in treatment of Teen Eating Disorders, Teen Depression, Teen Anxiety, Teen Substance Abuse Conditions, and more. Teen Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is considered a goal-oriented approach that focuses on helping teens gain relief by gaining insight into the connections that exist between their feelings, thoughts, and behaviors.
At Paradigm Treatment Centers, we firmly believe that successful adolescent treatment requires supporting teens to do deeper introspective therapeutic work, in order to discover insights into themselves that will empower them to take action toward improving their health and well-being. During our Teen Cognitive Behavioral sessions, our therapists work with teens to uncover deeper thoughts and feelings that are often unconscious and yet, may be having significant negative effects in the teens’ lives. This includes special focus on unhealthy thought patterns and the relationship between those thoughts and their current behaviors. Therapists then support teens to evaluate what kinds of goals they can set to improve their health, and identify behaviors they can implement, in order to achieve those goals.
Because Teen Cognitive Behavioral Therapy sessions are goal-oriented, they tend to be more structured than other talk therapy sessions, in which teens may be freer to speak about thoughts, as they arise. Alternatively, in CBT sessions, therapists help teens to continue reflecting upon what their goals are and how they are progressing toward them. It’s also common for therapists to provide teens with some sort of “homework” practice to carry out, between sessions, such as an exercise or behavior to practice, outside of the treatment session. This homework is given in order to help teens begin to make the transition toward applying the discoveries of therapy sessions into real situations of their daily lives.
One of the reasons we implement Teen CBT strategies in our therapy sessions is because of how the approach successfully allows teens to make progress at both levels of their thought patterns as well as their behaviors. Teen Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is extremely helpful in supporting teens to examine and restructure negative thought patterns and belief systems, which cause considerable harm in their lives. This is extremely valuable, since these false beliefs (such as low sense of worth, feelings of judgment, fear of being alone, and sense of doom) are prevalent among so many different mental health conditions. Therefore, while we work with teens to address problematic behaviors, it’s also deeply important to help them learn to identify and then disrupt those negative thought patterns, so they can eventually restructure them, to support their greater health.
There are a number of reasons why Teen CBT is successful and why teens at Paradigm respond so well to it. First of all, because CBT allows teens to focus on a tangible practice or behavior, it can sometimes be easier for teens to bridge the gap between their emotions and their behaviors, as well as their struggles and how to feel better. Whereas some of the introspective work teens do to learn to process their thoughts and feeling scan sometimes feel challenging, the goal-oriented work can feel tangible, with concrete steps teens can take, toward gaining relief in their lives. In a similar respect, we find that Teen Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is also extremely helpful in supporting teens to sustain the progress they’ve made in treatment, as well as their ongoing sobriety. Lastly, Teen CBT is also helpful in teaching teens how to re-introduce healthy, beneficial activities and practices, which serve to improve their overall quality of life. In this respect, we strongly believe that teen treatment should not just focus on the removal of obstacles or problematic behaviors, but on the implementation of new, healthy, and enjoyable additions to teens’ lives.