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How Can CBT Help My Teen?

a teen has cognitive behavioral therapy added to his mental health treatment plan because it could help

Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) is a type of talk therapy or psychotherapy that can be used to help treat depression and anxiety disorders as well as stress, trauma, and other personal challenges. CBT for teens is often used for young people struggling with mental health issues that interfere with their home or school life. CBT activities aim to change how people think and behave by transforming negative thoughts into positive ones and teaching problem-solving skills.

If your child is going through a rough patch, Imagine Seattle’s cognitive-behavioral therapy program for teens can be just what they need to recover. Our therapists select CBT activities designed to address your child’s individual needs, whether they have experienced trauma, peer pressure, family problems, or substance use disorder. Reach out to us at 888.346.0473 to learn more about how we incorporate CBT into our mental health programs for teens.

How Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy Can Help Teens

Cognitive-behavioral therapy is a powerful tool for teens and can help with many common issues, including:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Eating disorders
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Substance use disorder

The core belief of cognitive-behavioral therapy is that thoughts affect how you feel, which impacts your behavior. As teens go through the challenges of hormonal fluctuations, social situations, academic workload, and their first experience in the working world, they may need help understanding this connection. CBT for teens shows them how to use the power of their thoughts to improve all other areas of their life. This benefits teens whether or not they are struggling with mental health or other personal issues.

CBT teaches young people to challenge and question distorted or unhelpful thought patterns that can lead to negative behaviors. It also helps them change unhelpful or negative thinking styles and replace them with healthier ways of coping with anxiety and stress.

CBT Activities for Teens

Cognitive-behavioral therapy is a type of counseling that aims to change how you think and behave. If you enroll your teen in a therapy program, they may participate in the following CBT activities:

  • Cognitive restructuring – This technique involves challenging your negative thoughts by replacing them with more positive ones. For example, if your teen is feeling depressed or anxious, it can help them to remind themselves that these feelings are temporary and will pass eventually.
  • Behavioral activation – This activity encourages young people to get up and do things they enjoy, even if they do not feel like it at first. This can help improve their mood and make them feel better about themselves overall.
  • Mindfulness – By learning how to focus on the present moment through meditation and breathing exercises, your teen can reduce stress and negative thoughts before they spiral into a bad mood or make destructive choices.
  • Problem-solving – Many teens feel overwhelmed because they are encountering challenging situations for the first time and do not know the best way to respond. Through this CBT activity, a therapist will work with your child to brainstorm different solutions and how they will positively or negatively impact the situation.

These are just a few techniques used in CBT for teens that can help young people learn how to manage their emotions, improve their relationships, strengthen their decision-making skills, and reduce feelings of stress and overwhelm.

Discover CBT for Teens at Imagine Seattle

Therapy does not have to wait until the adult years. Starting the process early gives your child the benefit of practical skills they can use to help them achieve in school, work, and relationships for the rest of their lives. If your teen would benefit from developing healthier habits and improving their self-esteem, reach out to the professionals at Imagine Seattle. Call us today at 888.346.0473 or fill out our online form to learn more about how our CBT for teens can help your child learn how to manage their emotions and cope with stress.