Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT) is a cognitive-behavioral therapy (treatment that focuses on thoughts and feelings) for Post-traumatic Stress Disorder, or PTSD, and related conditions. PTSD can develop when an individual experiences a traumatic event such as physical and sexual abuse or assault, accidents, threats, military combat, or being a witness to violence or death.
CPT focuses on the connections between thoughts, feelings, behavior and bodily sensations. CPT is an evidenced based therapy which means that it has been proven to be effective through rigorous scientific research.
CPT provides a way to understand why recovery from traumatic events is difficult and how symptoms of PTSD affect daily life. The focus is on identifying how traumatic experiences change thoughts and beliefs, and how thoughts influence current feelings and behaviors. An important part of the treatment is addressing ways of thinking that might keep individuals “stuck” and get in the way of recovery from symptoms of PTSD and other problems.
Goals of CPT
Improve understanding of PTSD
Reduce distress about memories of the trauma
Decrease emotional numbing (i.e., difficulty feeling feelings) and avoidance of trauma reminders
Reduce feelings of being tense or “on edge”
Decrease depression, anxiety, guilt or shame
Improve day-to-day living
What Happens in CPT?
CPT lasts for 12 therapy sessions (50 minutes each) during which individuals will:
Get information on common reactions to trauma
Identify and challenge unhelpful thoughts with structured therapy sessions
Complete regular out-of-session practice assignments to apply what has been discussed in therapy sessions
Topics Covered During CPT
The meaning of the traumatic event(s)Identification of thoughts and feelings
Issues of power and control
CONTACT MANDI MADER, MSW, LCSW-C TO FIND OUT IF CPT IS RIGHT FOR YOU