Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is the first line, evidence-based treatment for OCD and anxiety disorders. It is not the traditional talk therapy. This treatment is short-term because you actively acquire and practice the tools you learn. Our patients typically experience a significant reduction in symptoms by the 8th session, and complete the program within 4 to 6 months with weekly sessions. This program is available for treating:
- Children and Adolescents
Basically, CBT works effectively by combining two forms of treatment:
Behavior Therapy helps to weaken the connections between troublesome situations and your reactions to them. Reactions such as fear, depression, or anger are self-defeating behaviors that cloud your ability to think logically and inhibit your capacity to resolve the situation in healthy ways. It teaches you how to calm your mind and body, so you can feel better, think more clearly, make better decisions, and approach the problem situation with more adaptive skills.
Cognitive Therapy helps you become more aware of your thinking patterns in order to increase your ability to identify distorted, negative thoughts. These mental thought traps are basically negative self-talk that cause havoc to your emotional and physical health. As you learn to correct these negative patterns, your thoughts will reflect the situation more realistically and appropriately. When you adopt more accurate perspectives about yourself, situations, and the world, you can engage with life in more productive ways.
Other forms of CBT we use:
Exposure & Response Prevention (ERP) is a specific type of CBT that helps you confront fears and worries in a stepwise manner in order to learn that the fears are actually not so threatening. You also learn to disobey OCD/anxiety-driven rules that keep you stuck in order to break free, become stronger, and build confidence to tackle further challenges in life.
Mindfulness Training increases your ability to be in the present moment physically, emotionally, and mentally. Attending to the present helps to decrease anxiety by keeping you from contemplating over past mistakes or worrying about future catastrophes. Being mindful helps you to identify the negative thinking patterns that lead to irrational anxiety. This provides the opportunity to adjust for those reactions, correct misperceptions, and minimize your discomfort from anxiety.
Family Systems Strategic CBT (FS-SCBT) is one of the distinguishing and unique feature developed by Dr. Yip and integrated with our treatment program. FS-SCBT restructures unhealthy family dynamics as a result of the powerfully negative influences OCD and anxiety has on the entire family. Your family members will learn how to be supportive of the sufferer without further enabling the condition. Productive family interactions are developed by establishing clear and concrete expectations, boundaries, and rules. This helps your child learn to be accountable for his/her own successes. As the child builds self-reliance, confidence, and independence from family members, this provides freedom from OCD and anxiety for the whole family.