At the Center for Anxiety, each member of our clinical staff is exceptionally trained in the application of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) for anxiety disorders and many other concerns. Our goal is to help our patients get better quickly, with reduced symptoms and dramatic improvements in their daily lives. We teach patients concrete skills, firmly grounded in current evidence-based practices, and ideographically tailored to each patient’s unique needs accounting for family, social, economic, cultural, and spiritual/religious factors. Although we do not prescribe medication, we work closely with other treatment providers to coordinate care.
In addition, individual clinical team members have unique strengths and areas of expertise. Treatment is tailored to each patient’s individual circumstances, and progress is tracked using our assessment tools to ensure improvement. Clinical services target an array of common problems in adults, adolescents and children, including anxiety disorders, depression, marital discord, specific childhood disorders, and serious mental health conditions. For a complete list of what we treat, please click here.
What is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)?
CBT is a collection of evidence-based treatments, all of which help people to change their feelings by modulating their patterns of thinking and behavior. Our office offers the following specific CBT approaches:
- Cognitive Therapy (CT)
- Behavioral Activation (BA)
- Exposure Therapy (ET)
- Exposure and Response Prevention (E/RP)
- CBT for Insomnia (CBT-I)
- Habit Reversal Training (HRT)
- Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT)
Our clinical team is staffed by highly skilled and compassionate clinicians, and includes a full time patient care manager and a full time research assistant to monitor patients’ experiences and clinical outcomes, in order to provide concierge level care. We treat patients with respect and empathy, ensuring that each patient receives the tools and strategies they need to manage their symptoms.
We use the following forms of CBT, which clinical research has found to be helpful in treating anxiety, depression, and other mental health concerns. None of these treatments involve any medication directly, though some individuals may use medication while engaged in CBT.
Types of Therapy Include:
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
Cognitive Therapy is a practical, short-term approach to treatment that has been proven effective in treating a wide range of issues including anxiety, depression, insomnia, and relationship difficulties. In CT, the goal is to identify and change patterns of thought that can perpetuate and exacerbate symptoms over time. By exploring the relationship between a person’s thoughts and feelings, CT helps patients become aware of inaccurate or negative thinking. Our therapists work with patients to develop more constructive ways of thinking, resulting in less distress and more positive emotions. As with other forms of CBT, cognitive therapy is present-focused, meaning patients are encouraged to identify what they can do right now to change how they feel. CT is seen as a collaborative enterprise between the therapist and the patient.
Exposure and Response Prevention Therapy (E/RP)
Exposure Therapy is a form of Cognitive Behavior Therapy that is particularly useful in treating phobias, social anxiety, panic disorder, and other anxiety disorders. In exposure therapy, the patient slowly and systematically confronts situations, objects or thoughts that are anxiety-provoking under the careful guidance of our trained therapists. In doing so, patients learn to respond more appropriately to their triggers as they become desensitized and anxiety levels are reduced. During treatment and also between-sessions, the patient practices confronting their fears in a controlled environment so that they gain the confidence to manage stressful situations on their own in the real world.
Habit Reversal Treatment (HRT)
HRT is a form of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy to treat repetitive impulse control disorders such as trichotillomania (hair pulling), dermotillomania (skin picking), tics, and Tourette Syndrome. HRT is a multi-stage process aimed at increasing patient awareness, cultivating substitution behaviors, and stress management. First, therapists work with patients to increase the awareness of sensations that accompany the repetitive behavior. Then the patient is taught to replace the impulse with a more appropriate behavior. Finally, we teach stress management techniques, such as deep breathing, muscle relaxation and imagery to help reduce the frequency and intensity of impulsive behaviors.
Comprehensive Behavioral Intervention for Tics (CBIT)
CBIT is also a form of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy that has been devised to work specifically with tics. This highly structured treatment helps reduce tic severity and is very effective for patients struggling with Tourette Syndrome. Similar to HRT, our therapists work with patients to identify triggers, sensations and feelings associated with tics, teach them to substitute more appropriate behaviors when those sensations arise, and make further changes to daily activities in order to reduce the onset of tics.
Parent-Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT)
PCIT is a structured and family-oriented Cognitive Behavioral Therapy designed to help young children (ages 2-7) with emotional and behavioral disorders (like defiance or aggression). The focus of PCIT is on improving the parent-child relationship, and changing maladaptive patterns of parent-child interaction. Parents are coached live during actual interactions with their child that take place in an observation room by one of our trained therapists who watches via a one-way mirror and/or live video feed, and provides guidance through a Bluetooth earpiece worn by the parent. The coaching provides parents with immediate feedback on their use of the new parenting skills, which enables them to apply the skills correctly and master them rapidly. At present, PCIT is offered only in our Brooklyn office.
Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT)
MBCT combines Cognitive Behavioral Therapy techniques with mindfulness strategies so that patients can more calmly manage their thoughts and emotions during periods of anxiety or depression. Patients are taught mindfulness techniques that include meditation and breathing exercises, while learning to break negative thought patterns by understanding the interaction between thoughts, feelings and behaviors. Mindfulness allows people to focus on the present, rather than worrying about the past of the future, while CBT helps in reframing negative thoughts. Research has found MBCT to be particularly effective in reducing recurrence of depression.
Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)
Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) is a comprehensive form of CBT to treat a broad range of symptoms and concerns. This structured treatment involves four main modules: (1) Mindfulness, (2) Distress Tolerance, (3) Emotion Regulation, and (4) Interpersonal Effectiveness. One overarching theme in DBT is to emphasize acceptance of uncomfortable thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. Our therapists use DBT to help patients find a comfortable balance between acceptance and change. Patients are taught an array of skills to cope with unhealthy thoughts, behaviors, and relationships, resulting in positive changes in daily life. Click here for more information about our DBT program.
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