Cognitive Behavior Therapy For Ptsd Essay

2607 words - 10 pages

Cognitive Behavior Therapy Based Treatment for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorders: Cognitive Processing Therapy Approach
What do you do when you experience a life threatening, traumatic event, and months later you are still experiencing the same frightening responses? Individuals who experience trauma are often forced to face their problems long after the event has happened. The first step to dealing with this issue would be to seek professional help as soon as possible so that they may be properly diagnosed and receive accurate treatment to overcome the intrusive symptoms. An individual who is suffering from symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) have experienced, witnessed, or was affected by a life threatening event. These individuals experience persistent responses that affect their lives drastically. They are constantly overwhelmed and cannot move on from persistent painful memories. They are in a terrifying state where they feel a constant sense of danger. This paper examines Cognitive Behavior Therapy’s (CBT) various Psychological Treatments for PTSD, specifically examining the effects of the Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT) approach and its effects on controlling or reducing stressing and intrusive symptoms of PTSD to receive desired outcomes.
According to the American Psychiatric Association (DSM-IV-TR), individuals diagnosed with PTSD have to be exposed to an actual traumatic or life threatening event in which they experienced, witnessed, or was confronted with an event that could have caused serious injury or threatened the integrity of self or others, which initiated an intense response of agitated behavior, horror, or fear, (2000). Traumatic events include and are not limited to: natural disasters, terrorist attacks, war, rape, assault, sexual or physical abuse, vehicular accidents, victimization, childhood neglect/abuse, kidnapping, and unexpected deaths. Individuals with PTSD persistently re-experience their traumatic event in their thoughts, perceptions, imagery, dreams, illusions, hallucinations, and flashbacks. They may experience intense physiological distress or reactivity to cues of the traumatic event. These individuals persistently avoid any stimuli associated with the traumatic event and use other mechanisms to cope with any situation or cue that recalls or contradicts their emotional or cognitive responses to the traumatic event (American Psychiatric Association [DSM-IV-TR], 2000). Individuals with PTSD also experience persistent symptoms of increased arousal, such as irritability and difficulty concentrating. These disturbances can cause significant distress in social life, the work place, and family systems. According to the American Psychiatric Association (DSM-IV-TR), in order for individuals to be diagnosed with PTSD they must experience disturbances and symptoms for more than one month (2000). Symptoms can be specified as acute (less than 3 months), chronic (3 months or...

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