Is behavioral therapy ideal for teen patients? As a parent or guardian, you may be wondering if cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) or another form of therapeutic care would help your teen properly manage their feelings and thoughts, and deal with their life problems.
While behavior therapy is definitely evidence-based and falls under traditional treatment, the best way for you to figure out if it works with your teen is to see a healthcare professional and get your teen assessed and possibly diagnosed. Barring a serious diagnosis—for example, if your teen’s mental state is unstable and they need 24-hour medical care—your teen will likely be recommended to undergo behavioral therapy sessions in an outpatient setting. Searching for behavior therapy options for teens near Denver, CO? Reach out to Imagine Fort Collins today by calling 970.680.5887 or contacting our team online.
What Are the Different Types of Behavioral Therapy?
Behavioral therapy for teens may include different types of therapeutic care. “Behavioral therapy” is actually an umbrella term for different forms of therapy that are focused on identifying and changing potentially self-destructive or unhealthy behaviors. Overall, these therapies are based on the idea that all behaviors are learned and, therefore, can be changed.
Behavioral therapy can treat the following healthcare problems:
- Anger-based disorders, like intermittent explosive disorder
- Anxiety and panic disorders
- Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
- Bipolar disorder
- Eating disorders
- Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
- Post-traumatic stress disorder
- Phobias, like social phobias
- Self-harming behavior
- Substance use disorders
This type of therapy can benefit children, teens, and adults. Three popular types of behavior therapy are acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), and CBT.
What Is Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy?
Cognitive-behavioral therapy for teens is extremely popular, and its effectiveness is high. CBT combines behavioral therapy with cognitive therapy, which means that CBT sessions have a twin focus on patterns of action and patterns of thought.
Treatment is centered on how a patient’s thoughts and beliefs influence their actions and moods. There’s also more focus put on a patient’s current problems and how to work on them. The long-term goal of CBT programs is to help a patient build thinking and behavioral patterns that help them achieve a better quality of life.
What Are the Benefits of Behavioral Therapy for Teens?
CBT, in particular, can help teens learn how to interpret their environment objectively and differently. Teens often develop distorted core beliefs about themselves. CBT helps confront and modify those distortions. For example, a teen who thinks they are socially awkward may then experience anxiety and avoid social interactions. CBT can help this teen, and others, learn to identify their negative thoughts and replace them with more realistic and helpful ones.
Compared to other therapeutic approaches, CBT is generally short-term and therefore easy to undergo without disrupting a patient’s day-to-day schedule. The CBT approach is also very problem-focused, which means it deals with a patient’s issues in the present. Unlike other mental health treatment approaches, a teen’s childhood isn’t likely to be rehashed by a therapist looking for hidden meaning in their behavior. Instead, sessions focus on helping a teen with problems going on in their current life.
Overall, behavioral therapy can provide patients benefits such as the following:
- Changing negative thought patterns
- Identifying positive responses to stress
- Improving communication habits
- Improving self-awareness and self-esteem
- Interrupting thoughts that lead to addictive or other self-destructive behaviors
- Reducing fears and phobias
Ready to Learn More About Imagine Fort Collins’s Behavior Therapy Options for Teens?
If you’re looking for behavior therapy options for teens near Denver, CO, contact Imagine Fort Collins today. Reach out to our team online or call 970.680.5887.