During addiction, your tolerance increases to your substance of choice, meaning you have to constantly use more in order to feel the same intoxicating effects. Substance abuse treatment focuses on helping you learn how to manage your symptoms, like cravings and triggers, so that you can maintain your sobriety. Both cognitive-behavioral therapy and dialectical behavior therapy are commonly used during treatment, but what is the difference between DBT vs CBT?
With more than 20 million Americans struggling with a substance abuse disorder annually, and another 10% of Americans engaged in active recovery, addiction is a common problem that impacts tens of millions of Americans. Addiction is a progressive disease, with symptoms continuing to get worse until you receive treatment.
How Addiction Progresses
Addiction causes you to compulsively abuse your substance of choice despite experiencing negative consequences as a result of your use and having a strong desire to quit. Substance abuse disorders change your brain chemistry, impair your judgment, and cause behavioral changes. There are two main types of addiction you can develop: psychological and physical. Both types require treatment and result in major alterations to your pleasure and reward center.
Drugs and alcohol are neurotransmitter inhibitors that force your brain to release more pleasurable neurotransmitters than it should. Once the effects of intoxication end, you’re left with a significant and sudden depletion of neurotransmitters. The depletion can lead to feelings of anxiety and depression, as well as cause intense cravings.
The longer you abuse drugs and alcohol, the more likely it is that your brain becomes dependent on your substance of choice in order to release neurotransmitters. Your brain also associates people, places, and things that remind you of your substance of use with pleasure. These associations are called triggers. Cravings and triggers can make it difficult to stop using and to remain clean and sober.
Addiction can also cause:
- Medical problems and organ damage
- Neurological issues
- Financial problems
- Strained relationships
- Employment and housing instability
DBT vs CBT
The biggest difference between DBT vs CBT is that DBT is a form of CBT. Cognitive-behavioral therapy focuses on improving your understanding of how your thoughts, feelings, and behaviors are related. Another important difference between DBT vs CBT is that dialectical behavior therapy helps you learn how to accept negative thoughts and feelings.
Both CBT and DBT are evidence-based treatments that are utilized during substance abuse treatment. Whether you participate in DBT vs CBT treatment, both will improve your ability to identify and cope with triggers and cravings. CBT and DBT are talking-based therapies and can be combined with other types of evidence-based and holistic therapies.
Connecting with Treatment Today
When you battle a substance abuse disorder, you can feel stressed, frustrated, and overwhelmed. While addiction can damage various parts of your life, recovery is always possible. To learn more about the difference between DBT vs CBT, or to discuss your treatment options, contact us today 855.786.1978. It is never too late to reach out for help. Make the change and get addiction help today.