Cognitive Behaviour Therapy –Reasons It Might Not Be Helpful

Getting therapy for improved mental health is similar to getting medicines for your physical health. There are several types of therapies for people with mental health requirements. Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is considered effective for several conditions. However, you should also consider the other side – why Before understanding why cognitive behavioral therapy might not be helpful, it is necessary to understand what is cognitive-behavioral therapy.

What is Cognitive Behavioural Therapy?

 Cognitive-behavioral therapy is a type of psychotherapy that focuses on changing negative thinking and behavior patterns. It is designed to address dysfunctional thoughts, emotions, and actions. The goal is for the individual to work on new ways of thinking about their life. Cognitive-behavioral therapy effectively treats depression, anxiety disorders, OCD spectrum disorders, eating disorders, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), personality disorders, and addiction.

This form of treatment can be done either one-on-one with a cognitive therapist or as part of a group treatment program with other people who also have mental health problems. For example, CBT is considered an effective treatment for anxiety, depression, and some phobias. It involves a series of ‘exposure exercises.’ These are activities that the person is asked to perform in front of a therapist. The therapist will help them do this gradually and safely, leading to reduced anxiety and panic attacks. The types of exposures vary depending on what the individual has difficulties with. Still, they usually involve public speaking, feeling uncomfortable things in one’s body (e.g., touching toes with outstretched arms, touching one’s forehead), or going through a fear of something.

Now that the basic definition of Cognitive Behavioral therapy has been understood. It is important to recognize the most common symptoms observed among people who need to undergo cognitive behavioral therapy. Let’s now look at the most common symptoms of cognitive-behavioral therapy.

Symptoms of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

There are several different types of issues that can be resolved through Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. With the assistance of an experienced behavioral therapist, any individual with cognitive-behavioral issues can show the following symptoms:

  • Anxiety/Fearfulness

The person feels overly apprehensive about things that may happen in the future or has a disturbing fear of things happening around them. Still, they may be benign events (e. .g. the person is afraid of being on the train and seeing a homeless person).

  • Avoidance

The person tries to avoid certain situations that may lead to negative outcomes (e.g., staying away from public places where they may be assaulted or avoiding a conversation with someone they feel uncomfortable with).

  • Obsessive Thoughts

The thoughts are recurrent, distressing, and intrude into the person’s consciousness.

  • Emotional Suppression

The person tries to avoid emotional reactions by suppressing them and focusing on their emotions instead of their behaviors (i. e., their focus is on the next step rather than what they’re feeling).

  • Self-Criticism

People are overly critical of themselves, and they beat themselves up for everything they do.

  • Sense of Loneliness

The person feels lonely, isolated, and abandoned by others.

All the above reasons and symptoms can be quite helpful in understanding the need and requirements of cognitive-behavioral therapy. It may also help an affected individual with cognitive behavioral therapy for social anxiety. However, there are several reasons why the entire process of having cognitive behavioral therapy sessions could not have the desired effects.

Why Didn’t Cognitive Behavioural Therapy Work?

There is a broad consensus among professionals in the mental health field that CBT is one of the most effective treatments for mental disorders, such as depression, anxiety, and some eating disorders. Unfortunately, the effectiveness of this therapy is not always obvious to patients and therapists when they first start out. It can take weeks or months before the benefits of CBT are recognizable. In addition, people who suffer from depression often experience guilt and self-blame. Cognitive-behavioral therapy helps patients recognize these negative thought patterns and then change them by finding more realistic ways to view themselves.Here are some of the most common reasons why cognitive behavioral therapy may not work for some individual:

  • Don’t assume that just because a therapist says they are skilled at CBT makes them a good therapist for you

Checking your potential therapist’s credentials is a good way to understand if they can address all your requirements. In addition, ask questions regarding their training and experience. It will help you understand the depth and level of their experience and how much they have used the principles of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for their patients.

  • In some cases, cognitive behavior therapy stresses the therapy technique over the relationship between therapist and patient.

People with extremely high emotions would require a good rapport with their therapist. In some cases, cognitive behavioral therapy might not be able to address the issues. Therefore it is important to look for a therapist whose personality matches well with your own.

  • Assumptions in CBT might be faulty

Due to several rules in cognitive behavioral therapy, faulty and irrational thoughts as the main reason for maladaptive behavior and mental health problems. However, such a line of thought can cause further issue and backfire on the person who might be involve in the process of cognitive-behavioral therapy.

  • CBT or CBT based techniques may be ineffective for several mental disorders

More than one research has claimed that cognitive behavioral therapy might not be effective for several mental health problems. Also, many mental health professionals have agreed that several CBT techniques might create unfavorable results and should not be the first treatment route for various mental disorders.


The information has been provided about cognitive behavioral therapy. Its definition has been provided, along with the symptoms. In addition, the reasons why cognitive behavioral therapy might not help reduce or resolve mental health issues have been provided. Therefore, it is important to research so you can resolve mental health issues through the assistance of mental health professionals.

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