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Tailored Internet-Based CBT is Effective for Depression

According to a recent study published in Plos One, tailored internet-based cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) may be helpful in the treatment of depression. In the current study, researchers compared individually tailored, internet-based self-help CBT to standardized (non-tailored) internet-based CBT and an active control (a monitored online discussion group). Participants included 121 individuals diagnosed with major depressive disorder and a range of comorbid symptoms. The standardized CBT (non-tailored) group received 8 self-help downloadable chapters with material on behavioral activation, cognitive restructuring, sleep management, general health advice and relapse prevention. The tailored CBT group received 25 self-help downloadable chapters with material on depression, panic, social anxiety, worrying and additional material (e.g., information on stress management and problem solving strategies) and each participant received an individual 10-week treatment plan. Both CBT groups (tailored and non-tailored) received email support from a therapist. At post-treatment and at a 6 month follow-up, both groups improved on measures of depression, anxiety, and quality of life. Subgroup analyses showed that the tailored CBT group had greater recovery rates as well as greater reductions in depressive symptoms among participants who presented with higher levels of depression and comorbidity at baseline. These results suggest that tailoring guided self-help treatments for depression may help make them more effective than standardized approaches.

Johansson, R., Sjoberg, E., Sjogren, M., Johnsson, E., Carlbring, P., Andersson, T., Rousseau, A., Andersson, G.  (2012).   Tailored vs. Standard Internet-Based Cognitive Behavior Therapy for Depression and Comorbid Symptoms: A Randomized Controlled Trial.  Plos ONE, 7(5) : e36905.  doi:  10.1371/journal.pone.0036905

The Versatility of Cognitive Behavior Therapy

In this video clip from a recent 3-day CBT Workshop at the Beck Institute for Cognitive Behavior Therapy, Dr. Aaron Beck discusses the similarities and differences between CBT for Depression and CBT for Schizophrenia. Dr. Beck explains that both treatments aim to help patients relinquish their feelings of alienation and to elevate their beliefs about themselves and their future. Treatment for Schizophrenia also addresses the specific symptoms of schizophrenia, such as paranoia and hallucinations, which require specialized cognitive and behavioral techniques. For information about training in cognitive behavior therapy, visit our website.

Cognitive Behavior Therapy for Depression

In this clip from a recent 3-day workshop at the Beck Institute for Cognitive Behavior Therapy, Dr. Aaron Beck discusses CBT strategies for suicidal patients facing a number of losses or negative events (e.g., loss of job/family/assets/health/etc.) Dr. Beck explains that depression stems from the meaning one attaches to life events rather than the events themselves. For example, a person who is vulnerable to depression might believe, “Losing my job means I am worthless.” Dr. Beck then uses a patient example to demonstrate cognitive restructuring, a key CBT strategy for treating depression.

To learn more about Cognitive Behavior Therapy, visit our website.

Terapia Cognitiva Conductal [The Future of CBT]

Dr. Aaron Beck discusses the future of Cognitive Therapy at Beck Institute’s Cognitive Behavior Therapy Workshop in Spanish. According to Dr. Beck, the theory of Cognitive Therapy rests on the science of human behavior and human psychopathology. As the scientific basis expands (e.g., neuroscience, psychopathology, social psychology, cognitive psychology, etc.), so too will Cognitive Therapy.  www.beckinstitute.org/cbt-workshops.

Terapia Cognitiva Conductal [The Many Applications of Cognitive Therapy]

Dr. Beck discusses the many different applications of cognitive behavior therapy (CBT)—and states that he never would have expected CBT to be utilized in the treatment of so many different conditions. For example, CBT can be useful in the treatment of patients with epilepsy; it can reduce the likelihood of additional heart attacks among cardiac patients; and it can help with cancer-related depression. www.beckinstitute.org/cbt-workshops

Cognitive Therapy – Negative Core Beliefs (Part 2)

Dr. Aaron Beck answers questions from participants at Beck Institute’s first ever CBT Workshop in Spanish. In this clip, Dr. Beck discusses how core beliefs influence the impact of traumatic events. The activation of negative core beliefs about one’s situation can make it even more difficult to cope with life after a traumatic event. You can ask Dr. Aaron Beck your own questions at a Beck Institute CBT Workshop. For more information visit www.beckinstitute.org/cbt-workshops.

March 12 – 14, 2012, Cognitive Behavior Therapy Workshop

Social workers, psychiatrists, family physicians, nurses, psychologists, graduate students, and other professionals from mental health, medical, and related fields traveled from Australia, Brazil, Canada, Japan, Latvia, United Kingdom, and thirteen U.S. states.

Workshop participants engaged in dyadic roleplay to practice CBT skills.

Workshop participants agreed that the diversity of the classroom enriched the learning experience. Participants received professional training in Cognitive Behavior Therapy from Judith S. Beck, Ph.D., Rosanna Sposato, Psy.D., and other Beck Institute faculty.

Dr. Judith Beck (pictured above) lectured on CBT for depression and instructed participants on how to: establish a strong therapeutic alliance; educate patients about their diagnosis; explain the cognitive model; elicit expectations for treatment; socialize patients to treatment; and, most importantly, instill hope.

Dr. Rosanna Sposato (left) lectured on CBT for Anxiety (including Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Social Anxiety Disorder, and Panic Disorder). Dr. Sposato explained cognitive behavior therapists must focus on the catastrophic thoughts patients have about their symptoms. For example, a patient with panic disorder might believe that the increase in his heart rate and chest pain he is experiencing means he is about to have a heart attack. One of the ways that CBT has been elaborated and expanded upon has been the development of a cognitive formulation for each of the different disorders, as well as the development of specific techniques for each disorder. Cognitive behavior therapists must determine the key cognitions and behaviors of each individual patient and use their conceptualization to plan treatment.

Click here to learn more about CBT workshops at Beck Institute.

CBT is Effective in Primary Health Care

A recent study published in Family Practice reviewed research on the effectiveness of cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) in the treatment of depression and anxiety in primary care clinics. Researchers conducted a literature review of seventeen studies, eight of which evaluated the effectiveness of supported computer-based CBT in primary care. They discovered that CBT in primary care is more effective than generic care and that primary care therapists (e.g., practice nurses, general practitioners, social workers and other therapists without specialized training in delivering structured psychological therapy) provide CBT effectively. This is especially true when CBT incorporates computer-based treatment or internet-based self-help programs, used widely in the UK.

Heifedt, R.S., Strem, C., Koistrup, N., Eisermann, M., Waterlo, K., (2011). Effectiveness of cognitive behavioural therapy in primary health care: a review. Family Practice, 28, 489-504.

January 31 – February 1, 2012, Cognitive Behavior Therapy Workshop Level I: Depression and Anxiety

February 2012: Earlier this week psychologists, psychiatrists, physicians, social workers, professors, counselors, nurses and other professionals from mental health, medical, and related fields traveled from 15 states and 7 countries (including Australia, Brazil, Canada,  Colombia, Japan, Thailand, and United Kingdom) to attend this month’s Cognitive Behavior Therapy Workshop Level I on Depression and Anxiety at Beck Institute.

Participants had the opportunity to gain professional training from Aaron T. Beck, M.D., Judith S. Beck, Ph.D., and Cory Newman, Ph.D. Trainees participated in seminars and case discussions, reviewed videos of therapy sessions, observed and engaged in demonstration role-plays among other activities.

Dr. Judith Beck (pictured right) spoke about cognitive behavior therapy with depressed patients and their automatic thoughts.  She emphasized psychoeducation, treatment planning, goal setting, and activity scheduling with patients.

Dr. Cory Newman (pictured left) spoke about the need for anxiety and the need to learn how to control it, rather than mask it with medication.

He emphasized the use of case conceptualization and interoseptive exposure experiments in treatment.

Cognitive Therapy Demonstration

Participants had the benefit of watching Dr. Aaron Beck conduct a live patient session, which was viewed via closed-circuit television. Following the patient interview Dr. Beck answered questions from participants in a case discussion (pictured above left), during which he explained what the next session should include. Dr. Beck explained agenda setting, beginning with a review of homework and went on to explain that he asks patients, “What problems do you want my help in solving today?” to guide them into naming the problems (as opposed to giving a full description at that moment), then prioritize the problems and let him know roughly about how much of the session they’d like to devote to each one. Participants noted some key techniques that Dr. Beck used which they found to be quite useful:

  • Normalizing patient’s emotions and beliefs
  • Providing patient with language with which they can describe and validate their thoughts
  • Instilling hope and reassuring successful treatment
  • Trying a variety of methods including imagery
  • Collaboration with the patient in terms of treatment model to prevent the patient from seeing the therapist as an authority figure
  • Finding some light anecdotes, humor can be a nice touch in sessions

We are so pleased that so many professionals from all over the world were able to come to the Beck Institute for such an exciting workshop!

More event highlights:

December 12 – 14, 2011, Cognitive Behavior Therapy Workshop Level I: Depression and Anxiety

Dr. Beck conducting roleplay with a workshop participant.

December 2011: Last week at Beck Institute, psychologists, psychiatrists, physicians, social workers, professors, counselors, nurses and other professionals from mental health, medical, and related fields traveled from 13 US states and 6 foreign countries (including Australia, Canada, China, Germany, Ireland, and Japan) to attend this month’s Cognitive Behavior Therapy Workshop Level I on Depression and Anxiety at Beck Institute.

Participants had the opportunity to gain professional training from Aaron T. Beck, M.D., Judith S. Beck, Ph.D., and Amy Wenzel, Ph.D. Trainees participated in seminars and case discussions, reviewed videos of therapy sessions, observed and engaged in demonstration role-plays among other activities.

Cognitive Therapy Demonstration

Participants had the benefit of watching Dr. Aaron Beck conduct a roleplay session (pictured above), with one of the workshop participants. Following the roleplay interview Dr. Beck answered questions from participants in a case discussion, during which he explained what the next session should include. Dr. Beck explained agenda setting, beginning with a review of homework and went on to explain that he asks patients, “What problems do you want my help in solving today?” to guide them into naming the problems (as opposed to giving a full description at that moment), then prioritize the problems and let him know roughly about how much of the session they’d like to devote to each one. Participants noted some key techniques that Dr. Beck used which they found to be quite useful:

  • Normalizing patient’s emotions and beliefs
  • Providing patient with language with which they can describe and validate their thoughts
  • Instilling hope and reassuring successful treatment
  • Trying a variety of methods including imagery
  • Collaboration with the patient in terms of treatment model to prevent the patient from seeing the therapist as an authority figure
  • Finding some light anecdotes, humor can be a nice touch in sessions

Following the questions regarding the patient session, Dr. Beck answered participants’ questions on other subjects (video will be posted on our YouTube Channel).

Cognitive Behavior Therapy for Depression

Dr. Judith Beck (pictured left) spoke about cognitive behavior therapy with depressed patients and their automatic thoughts.  She emphasized psychoeducation, treatment planning, goal setting, and activity scheduling with patients.

In this picture (left) Dr. Beck is demonstrating how to use a cognitive conceptualization diagram in CBT treatment with depressed clients.

Cognitive Behavior Therapy for Anxiety

Dr. Amy Wenzel (pictured below) spoke about the need for anxiety and the need to learn how to cope with it.  She emphasized the use of teaching problem-solving skills and building self-efficacy.

We are so pleased that so many professionals from all over the world were able to come to the Beck Institute for such an exciting workshop!

More event highlights: