When finding effective ways to manage Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), it is important that all possible treatments are explored. Traditionally, ADHD has been treated with medication, and in some cases, behavioral modification. While behavioral modification can be effective when ADHD is diagnosed early, such as in pre-teen, or adolescent years, this approach is not typically used in adult diagnosed ADHD. One treatment method that is rising in popularity, is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy or CBT for adults with ADHD. When used as a treatment alongside medication, this type of therapy can provide effective ADHD coping skills that will benefit long term sufferers who have had little success with other treatments.
What is CBT for ADHD?
Used for over four decades, traditionally for treating conditions like depression, phobias, and anxiety, CBT uses verbal communication and scenarios, sometimes in a group setting, to address the issues of ADHD. More than just behavioral modification, CBT aims to focus on destructive and distractive behaviors that interfere with the management of ADHD. The main goal of CBT is to eliminate dysfunctional ways of thinking. For patients that lack focus due to dysfunctional thought patterns, CBT can mitigate the problem by analyzing what those thought patterns are, and using positive suggestion to provide new ways of thinking and dealing with everyday situations.
Key focus areas for CBT
These areas include:
- Developing social skills such as empathy, interpersonal communication, and conflict resolution.
- Addressing emotions and finding positive outlets for stress and anxiety.
- Developing problem solving skills and coping mechanisms.
- Developing strategies that help to control impulses, increase attentiveness, and increase organization and time management.
- Developing reasoning skills that can help to address negative and destructive thought patterns.
Online Self Help for ADHD Sufferers
While CBT is best administered by a therapist in a 1 on 1 or group situation, there are a number of online self improvement courses and modules that can provide sufferers with skills and strategies that are aligned with the cognitive behavioral therapy model. Help Guide is an excellent resource that provides basic and advanced strategies for managing adult ADHD.
ADHD is a lifelong behavioral condition, but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t options for sufferers. While medication can help in many ways, the addition of CBT and self-help resources can help sufferers to better manage the condition, and lead normal and productive lives.