Cognitive Therapy vs Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: What's the Difference?

When it comes to cognitive therapy and cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), it's important to understand that they are not two different approaches. In fact, CBT is a form of psychotherapy. However, there is a clear distinction between the two therapies in terms of therapeutic techniques and approaches. Behavioral therapy typically focuses on manipulating the external environment and the patient's internal physiological environment to bring about the desired behavior change.

It employs several methods, such as training in social skills, training to reverse habits, observational learning, and behavior modification to achieve change. In contrast, cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) views thinking as the main factor of change. Treatment seeks to assess the validity of patients' thoughts and beliefs. The therapist also seeks to establish and evaluate what the patient expects and predicts and their attributions to the causes of the events. CBT focuses on how your thoughts, feelings, and behavior influence each other.

While DBT works on these things, more emphasis is placed on regulating emotions, being aware, and learning to accept pain. CBT seeks to give patients the ability to recognize when their thoughts may become problematic and provides them with techniques to redirect those thoughts. DBT helps patients find ways to accept themselves, feel safe, and control their emotions to help regulate potentially destructive or harmful behaviors. In addition to DBT, there is a complete combination of letters from other CBT variants, such as acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) and mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT). In addition, there are different approaches to therapy and treatment pathways, such as cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT).

This highlights that cognitive therapy and cognitive behavioral therapy are not the same thing but two different varieties. The difference between cognitive therapy and cognitive behavioral therapy lies in the methods a counselor follows to understand a client. Cognitive therapy focuses on eliminating psychological distress, while CBT also focuses on eliminating negative behavior. Some of these therapies include cognitive therapy, rational emotional behavior therapy, and multimodal therapy. Cognitive therapy is a specific type of therapy used by counselors to understand a client's behavior, thoughts, and emotions in order to treat them.