Book: Reverse Depression Naturally

Book Title:

Reverse Depression Naturally – Alternative Treatments for Mood Disorders, Anxiety and Stress.

Author(s): Michelle Honda (PhD).

Year: 2020.

Edition: First (1st).

Publisher: Hatherleigh Press.

Type(s): Paperback and eBook.

Synopsis:

Offering breakthrough and effective holistic methods to manage and reduce depression and anxiety naturally from a leading naturopathic doctor.

Globally, more than 300 million people of all ages suffer from depression and that number is only increasing. Reverse Depression Naturally provides a comprehensive overview of depression and anxiety and how to effectively and naturally manage them. It is a complete resource of healing remedies, dietary recommendations, mental exercises, and protocols.

Reverse Depression Naturally offers practical tips and alternative solutions to popular treatments as well as beneficial supplements and home remedies. The book also features sections on stress, mental illness, alcoholism, and post-partum depression.

Book: CBT Journal for Dummies

Book Title:

CBT Journal for Dummies.

Author(s): Rob Wilson and Rhena Branch.

Year: 2012.

Edition: First (1st).

Publisher: Wiley.

Type(s): Hardcover.

Synopsis:

Keep track of the progress you are making with Cognitive Behavioural Therapy.

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is a hugely popular self-help technique that teaches you how to break free from destructive or negative behaviours and make positive changes to both your thoughts and your actions. CBT Journal For Dummies offers a guided space for you to keep a record of your progress, used in conjunction with either CBT For Dummies and/or alongside consultation with a therapist.

This book features an introduction to CBT, followed by a guided 100-day journal. Each chapter focuses on a new CBT technique, with information on how to use the journal space and assessment advice. Topics covered include; establishing the link between thoughts and feelings; preventing ‘all or nothing’ thinking; turning mountains into molehills; focusing on the present; using emotional reasoning; avoiding over-generalising; thinking flexibly; keeping an open mind; assessing the positives; coping with frustration; tackling toxic thoughts; naming your emotions; comparing healthy and unhealthy emotions; working through worry; defining your core beliefs; adopting positive principles; and much more.

  • Has a removable band, leaving a discreet black journal.
  • The small trim size makes it perfect to use on the go.
  • A CBT ‘thought for the day’ appears on alternate blank pages.
  • Content is progressive, encouraging you to keep working through the following days.
  • Coverage is generalized enough to be applicable to every user of CBT.

Book: Managing Anxiety with CBT for Dummies

Book Title:

Managing Anxiety with CBT for Dummies.

Author(s): Graham C. Davey, Kate Cavanagh, Fergal Jones, Lydia Turner, and Adrian Whittington.

Year: 2012.

Edition: First (1st).

Publisher: Wiley.

Type(s): Paperback, Audiobook, and Kindle.

Synopsis:

Don’t panic! Combat your worries and minimise anxiety with CBT!
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is a hugely popular self-help technique, which teaches you to break free from destructive or negative behaviours and make positive changes to both your thoughts and your actions. This practical guide to managing anxiety with CBT will help you understand your anxiety, identify solutions to your problems, and maintain your gains and avoid relapse.

Managing Anxiety with CBT For Dummies is a practical guide to using CBT to face your fears and overcome anxiety and persistent, irrational worries. You’ll discover how to put extreme thinking into perspective and challenge negative, anxiety-inducing thoughts with a range of effective CBT techniques to help you enjoy a calmer, happier life.

  • Helps you understand anxiety and how CBT can help.
  • Guides you in making change and setting goals.
  • Gives you tried-and-true CBT techniques to face your fears and keep a realistic perspective.

Managing Anxiety with CBT For Dummies gives you the tools you need to overcome anxiety and expand your horizons for a healthy, balanced life.

Book: Retrain Your Brain: Cognitive Behavioural Therapy in 7 Weeks

Book Title:

Retrain Your Brain: Cognitive Behavioural Therapy in 7 Weeks: A Workbook for Managing Depression and Anxiety.

Author(s): Seth J. Gillihan (PhD).

Year: 2018.

Edition: First (1st).

Publisher: Althea Press.

Type(s): Paperback and Kindle.

Synopsis:

Cognitive behaviour therapy strategies to help you manage anxiety and depression.

Get lasting relief from anger, panic, stress, and other mood-related conditions by applying the principles of cognitive behavioural therapy to your daily life.

From writing down your goals to addressing negative thought patterns, this accessible, easy-to-understand cognitive behavioural therapy book gives you everything you need to let the healing begin in one convenient CBT workbook. Learn to grow as a person, overcome challenges, and boost your overall health and well-being.

Explore cognitive behaviour therapy through:

  • 10 Soothing strategies: Discover proven CBT principles, like setting goals, maintaining mindfulness, and more.
  • Positive self-evaluations: Track your progress and reflect on what you’ve learned along the way.
  • Practice opportunities: Use this workbook in tandem with clinical cognitive behavioural therapy or post-therapy.

Progress toward healing with a simplified approach to cognitive behaviour therapy.

Book: Retrain Your Anxious Brain

Book Title:

Retrain Your Anxious Brain – Practical and Effective Tools to Conquer Anxiety.

Author(s): John Tsilimparis (MFT).

Year: 2014.

Edition: First (1st).

Publisher: Harlequin.

Type(s): Paperback, Audiobook, and Kindle.

Synopsis:

Control Anxiety Before it Begins

Trouble sleeping, panic attacks, knots in your stomach, excessive worry, doubts, phobiasanxiety comes in many shapes and sizes, and affects millions of people. But you do not have to suffer anymore. In Retrain Your Anxious Brain, renowned therapist and anxiety expert John Tsilimparis, MFT, shares the ground breaking programme he has created to help hundreds of people (himself included) free themselves from crippling anxiety and live healthier, happier lives.

Rather than just treating or masking symptoms, Tsilimparis’s innovative approach helps you identify and short-circuit anxiety triggers, so that you can stop anxiety before it starts. This customisable plan teaches you how to:

  • Alter the fixed thoughts that can cause anxiety.
  • Adjust your existing personal belief systems.
  • Challenge the idea of consensus reality.
  • Balance your dualistic mind.
  • Consciously create your own reality.

What is Cognitive Behavioural Therapy?

Introduction

Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) is a psycho-social intervention that aims to improve mental health. CBT focuses on challenging and changing unhelpful cognitive distortions (e.g. thoughts, beliefs, and attitudes) and behaviours, improving emotional regulation, and the development of personal coping strategies that target solving current problems. Originally, it was designed to treat depression, but its uses have been expanded to include treatment of a number of mental health conditions, including anxiety. CBT includes a number of cognitive or behaviour psychotherapies that treat defined psychopathologies using evidence-based techniques and strategies.

CBT is based on the combination of the basic principles from behavioural and cognitive psychology. It is different from historical approaches to psychotherapy, such as the psychoanalytic approach where the therapist looks for the unconscious meaning behind the behaviours and then formulates a diagnosis. Instead, CBT is a “problem-focused” and “action-oriented” form of therapy, meaning it is used to treat specific problems related to a diagnosed mental disorder. The therapist’s role is to assist the client in finding and practicing effective strategies to address the identified goals and decrease symptoms of the disorder. CBT is based on the belief that thought distortions and maladaptive behaviours play a role in the development and maintenance of psychological disorders, and that symptoms and associated distress can be reduced by teaching new information-processing skills and coping mechanisms.

When compared to psychoactive medications, review studies have found CBT alone to be as effective for treating less severe forms of depression, anxiety, post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), tics, substance abuse, eating disorders and borderline personality disorder. Some research suggests that CBT is most effective when combined with medication for treating mental disorders such as major depressive disorder. In addition, CBT is recommended as the first line of treatment for the majority of psychological disorders in children and adolescents, including aggression and conduct disorder. Researchers have found that other bona fide therapeutic interventions were equally effective for treating certain conditions in adults. Along with interpersonal psychotherapy (IPT), CBT is recommended in treatment guidelines as a psychosocial treatment of choice. Psychiatry residents in the United States are mandated to receive training in psychodynamic, cognitive-behavioural, and supportive psychotherapy.

Brief History

Philosophical Roots

Precursors of certain fundamental aspects of CBT have been identified in various ancient philosophical traditions, particularly Stoicism. Stoic philosophers, particularly Epictetus, believed logic could be used to identify and discard false beliefs that lead to destructive emotions, which has influenced the way modern cognitive-behavioural therapists identify cognitive distortions that contribute to depression and anxiety. For example, Aaron T. Beck’s original treatment manual for depression states, “The philosophical origins of cognitive therapy can be traced back to the Stoic philosophers”. Another example of Stoic influence on cognitive theorists is Epictetus on Albert Ellis. A key philosophical figure who also influenced the development of CBT was John Stuart Mill.

Behaviour Therapy Roots

The modern roots of CBT can be traced to the development of behaviour therapy in the early 20th century, the development of cognitive therapy in the 1960s, and the subsequent merging of the two. Groundbreaking work of behaviourism began with John B. Watson and Rosalie Rayner’s studies of conditioning in 1920. Behaviourally-centred therapeutic approaches appeared as early as 1924 with Mary Cover Jones’ work dedicated to the unlearning of fears in children. These were the antecedents of the development of Joseph Wolpe’s behavioural therapy in the 1950s. It was the work of Wolpe and Watson, which was based on Ivan Pavlov’s work on learning and conditioning, that influenced Hans Eysenck and Arnold Lazarus to develop new behavioural therapy techniques based on classical conditioning.

During the 1950s and 1960s, behavioural therapy became widely utilised by researchers in the United States, the United Kingdom, and South Africa, who were inspired by the behaviourist learning theory of Ivan Pavlov, John B. Watson, and Clark L. Hull. In Britain, Joseph Wolpe, who applied the findings of animal experiments to his method of systematic desensitisation, applied behavioural research to the treatment of neurotic disorders. Wolpe’s therapeutic efforts were precursors to today’s fear reduction techniques. British psychologist Hans Eysenck presented behaviour therapy as a constructive alternative.

At the same time as Eysenck’s work, B. F. Skinner and his associates were beginning to have an impact with their work on operant conditioning. Skinner’s work was referred to as radical behaviourism and avoided anything related to cognition. However, Julian Rotter, in 1954, and Albert Bandura, in 1969, contributed behaviour therapy with their respective work on social learning theory, by demonstrating the effects of cognition on learning and behaviour modification. The work of the Australian Claire Weekes dealing with anxiety disorders in the 1960s was also seen as a prototype of behaviour therapy.

The emphasis on behavioural factors constituted the “first wave” of CBT.

Cognitive Therapy Roots

One of the first therapists to address cognition in psychotherapy was Alfred Adler with his notion of basic mistakes and how they contributed to creation of unhealthy or useless behavioural and life goals. Adler’s work influenced the work of Albert Ellis, who developed the earliest cognitive-based psychotherapy, known today as rational emotive behaviour therapy (REBT). Ellis also credits Abraham Low as a founder of cognitive behavioural therapy.

Around the same time that rational emotive therapy, as it was known then, was being developed, Aaron T. Beck was conducting free association sessions in his psychoanalytic practice. During these sessions, Beck noticed that thoughts were not as unconscious as Freud had previously theorised, and that certain types of thinking may be the culprits of emotional distress. It was from this hypothesis that Beck developed cognitive therapy, and called these thoughts “automatic thoughts”. Beck has been referred to as “the father of cognitive behavioural therapy.”

It was these two therapies, rational emotive therapy and cognitive therapy, that started the “second wave” of CBT, which was the emphasis on cognitive factors.

Behaviour and Cognitive Therapies Merge – “Third Wave” CBT

Although the early behavioural approaches were successful in many of the neurotic disorders, they had little success in treating depression. Behaviourism was also losing in popularity due to the so-called “cognitive revolution”. The therapeutic approaches of Albert Ellis and Aaron T. Beck gained popularity among behaviour therapists, despite the earlier behaviourist rejection of “mentalistic” concepts like thoughts and cognitions. Both of these systems included behavioural elements and interventions and primarily concentrated on problems in the present.

In initial studies, cognitive therapy was often contrasted with behavioural treatments to see which was most effective. During the 1980s and 1990s, cognitive and behavioural techniques were merged into cognitive behavioural therapy. Pivotal to this merging was the successful development of treatments for panic disorder by David M. Clark in the UK and David H. Barlow in the US.

Over time, cognitive behaviour therapy came to be known not only as a therapy, but as an umbrella term for all cognitive-based psychotherapies. These therapies include, but are not limited to, rational emotive therapy (RET), cognitive therapy, acceptance and commitment therapy, dialectical behaviour therapy, metacognitive therapy, metacognitive training, reality therapy/choice theory, cognitive processing therapy, EMDR, and multimodal therapy. All of these therapies are a blending of cognitive- and behaviour-based elements.

This blending of theoretical and technical foundations from both behaviour and cognitive therapies constituted the “third wave” of CBT. The most prominent therapies of this third wave are dialectical behaviour therapy and acceptance and commitment therapy.

Despite increasing popularity of “third-wave” treatment approaches, reviews of studies reveal there may be no difference in the effectiveness compared with “non-third wave” CBT for the treatment of depression.

Description

Mainstream cognitive behavioural therapy assumes that changing maladaptive thinking leads to change in behaviour and affect, but recent variants emphasize changes in one’s relationship to maladaptive thinking rather than changes in thinking itself. The goal of cognitive behavioural therapy is not to diagnose a person with a particular disease, but to look at the person as a whole and decide what can be altered.

Cognitive Distortions

Therapists or computer-based programmes use CBT techniques to help people challenge their patterns and beliefs and replace errors in thinking, known as cognitive distortions, such as “overgeneralising, magnifying negatives, minimising positives and catastrophising” with “more realistic and effective thoughts, thus decreasing emotional distress and self-defeating behaviour”. Cognitive distortions can be either a pseudo-discrimination belief or an over-generalisation of something. CBT techniques may also be used to help individuals take a more open, mindful, and aware posture toward cognitive distortions so as to diminish their impact.

Skills

Mainstream CBT helps individuals replace “maladaptive… coping skills, cognitions, emotions and behaviours with more adaptive ones”, by challenging an individual’s way of thinking and the way that they react to certain habits or behaviours, but there is still controversy about the degree to which these traditional cognitive elements account for the effects seen with CBT over and above the earlier behavioural elements such as exposure and skills training.

Phases in Therapy

CBT can be seen as having six phases:

  1. Assessment or psychological assessment;
  2. Reconceptualisation;
  3. Skills acquisition;
  4. Skills consolidation and application training;
  5. Generalisation and maintenance;
  6. Post-treatment assessment follow-up.

These steps are based on a system created by Kanfer and Saslow. After identifying the behaviours that need changing, whether they be in excess or deficit, and treatment has occurred, the psychologist must identify whether or not the intervention succeeded. For example, “If the goal was to decrease the behaviour, then there should be a decrease relative to the baseline. If the critical behaviour remains at or above the baseline, then the intervention has failed.”

The steps in the assessment phase include:

  • Step 1: Identify critical behaviours.
  • Step 2: Determine whether critical behaviours are excesses or deficits.
  • Step 3: Evaluate critical behaviours for frequency, duration, or intensity (obtain a baseline).
  • Step 4: If excess, attempt to decrease frequency, duration, or intensity of behaviours; if deficits, attempt to increase behaviours.

The re-conceptualisation phase makes up much of the “cognitive” portion of CBT. A summary of modern CBT approaches is given by Hofmann.

Delivery Protocols

There are different protocols for delivering cognitive behavioural therapy, with important similarities among them. Use of the term CBT may refer to different interventions, including “self-instructions (e.g. distraction, imagery, motivational self-talk), relaxation and/or biofeedback, development of adaptive coping strategies (e.g. minimising negative or self-defeating thoughts), changing maladaptive beliefs about pain, and goal setting”. Treatment is sometimes manualised, with brief, direct, and time-limited treatments for individual psychological disorders that are specific technique-driven. CBT is used in both individual and group settings, and the techniques are often adapted for self-help applications. Some clinicians and researchers are cognitively oriented (e.g. cognitive restructuring), while others are more behaviourally oriented (e.g. in vivo exposure therapy). Interventions such as imaginal exposure therapy combine both approaches.

Related Techniques

CBT may be delivered in conjunction with a variety of diverse but related techniques such as exposure therapy, stress inoculation, cognitive processing therapy, cognitive therapy, metacognitive therapy, metacognitive training, relaxation training, dialectical behaviour therapy, and acceptance and commitment therapy. Some practitioners promote a form of mindful cognitive therapy which includes a greater emphasis on self-awareness as part of the therapeutic process.

Medical Application

In adults, CBT has been shown to have effectiveness and a role in the treatment plans for anxiety disorders, body dysmorphic disorder, depression, eating disorders, chronic low back pain, personality disorders, psychosis, schizophrenia, substance use disorders, in the adjustment, depression, and anxiety associated with fibromyalgia, and with post-spinal cord injuries.

In children or adolescents, CBT is an effective part of treatment plans for anxiety disorders, body dysmorphic disorder, depression and suicidality, eating disorders and obesity, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), and posttraumatic stress disorder, as well as tic disorders, trichotillomania, and other repetitive behaviour disorders. CBT-SP, an adaptation of CBT for suicide prevention (SP), was specifically designed for treating youths who are severely depressed and who have recently attempted suicide within the past 90 days, and was found to be effective, feasible, and acceptable. CBT has also been shown to be effective for post traumatic stress disorder in very young children (3 to 6 years of age). Reviews found “low quality” evidence that CBT may be more effective than other psychotherapies in reducing symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder in children and adolescents. CBT has also been applied to a variety of childhood disorders, including depressive disorders and various anxiety disorders.

CBT combined with hypnosis and distraction reduces self-reported pain in children.

Cochrane reviews have found no evidence that CBT is effective for tinnitus, although there appears to be an effect on management of associated depression and quality of life in this condition. Other recent Cochrane Reviews found no convincing evidence that CBT training helps foster care providers manage difficult behaviours in the youths under their care,[79] nor was it helpful in treating people who abuse their intimate partners.

According to a 2004 review by INSERM of three methods, cognitive behavioural therapy was either “proven” or “presumed” to be an effective therapy on several specific mental disorders. According to the study, CBT was effective at treating schizophrenia, depression, bipolar disorder, panic disorder, post-traumatic stress, anxiety disorders, bulimia, anorexia, personality disorders and alcohol dependency.

Some meta-analyses find CBT more effective than psychodynamic therapy and equal to other therapies in treating anxiety and depression.

Computerized CBT (CCBT) has been proven to be effective by randomised controlled and other trials in treating depression and anxiety disorders, including children, as well as insomnia. Some research has found similar effectiveness to an intervention of informational websites and weekly telephone calls. CCBT was found to be equally effective as face-to-face CBT in adolescent anxiety and insomnia.

Criticism of CBT sometimes focuses on implementations (such as the UK IAPT) which may result initially in low quality therapy being offered by poorly trained practitioners. However, evidence supports the effectiveness of CBT for anxiety and depression. Acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) is a specialist branch of CBT (sometimes referred to as contextual CBT). ACT uses mindfulness and acceptance interventions and has been found to have a greater longevity in therapeutic outcomes. In a study with anxiety, CBT and ACT improved similarly across all outcomes from pre-to post-treatment. However, during a 12-month follow-up, ACT proved to be more effective, showing that it is a highly viable lasting treatment model for anxiety disorders.

Evidence suggests that the addition of hypnotherapy as an adjunct to CBT improves treatment efficacy for a variety of clinical issues.

CBT has been applied in both clinical and non-clinical environments to treat disorders such as personality conditions and behavioural problems. A systematic review of CBT in depression and anxiety disorders concluded that “CBT delivered in primary care, especially including computer- or Internet-based self-help programmes, is potentially more effective than usual care and could be delivered effectively by primary care therapists.”

Emerging evidence suggests a possible role for CBT in the treatment of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD); hypochondriasis; coping with the impact of multiple sclerosis; sleep disturbances related to aging; dysmenorrhea; and bipolar disorder, but more study is needed and results should be interpreted with caution. CBT can have a therapeutic effects on easing symptoms of anxiety and depression in people with Alzheimer’s disease. CBT has been studied as an aid in the treatment of anxiety associated with stuttering. Initial studies have shown CBT to be effective in reducing social anxiety in adults who stutter, but not in reducing stuttering frequency.

In the case of people with metastatic breast cancer, data is limited but CBT and other psychosocial interventions might help with psychological outcomes and pain management.

There is some evidence that CBT is superior in the long-term to benzodiazepines and the nonbenzodiazepines in the treatment and management of insomnia. CBT has been shown to be moderately effective for treating chronic fatigue syndrome.

In the United Kingdom, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) recommends CBT in the treatment plans for a number of mental health difficulties, including posttraumatic stress disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), bulimia nervosa, and clinical depression.

Depression

Cognitive behavioural therapy has been shown as an effective treatment for clinical depression. The American Psychiatric Association Practice Guidelines (April 2000) indicated that, among psychotherapeutic approaches, cognitive behavioural therapy and interpersonal psychotherapy had the best-documented efficacy for treatment of major depressive disorder. One etiological theory of depression is Aaron T. Beck’s cognitive theory of depression. His theory states that depressed people think the way they do because their thinking is biased towards negative interpretations. According to this theory, depressed people acquire a negative schema of the world in childhood and adolescence as an effect of stressful life events, and the negative schema is activated later in life when the person encounters similar situations.

Beck also described a negative cognitive triad. The cognitive triad is made up of the depressed individual’s negative evaluations of themselves, the world, and the future. Beck suggested that these negative evaluations derive from the negative schemata and cognitive biases of the person. According to this theory, depressed people have views such as “I never do a good job”, “It is impossible to have a good day”, and “things will never get better”. A negative schema helps give rise to the cognitive bias, and the cognitive bias helps fuel the negative schema. Beck further proposed that depressed people often have the following cognitive biases: arbitrary inference, selective abstraction, over-generalisation, magnification, and minimisation. These cognitive biases are quick to make negative, generalised, and personal inferences of the self, thus fuelling the negative schema.

A 2001 meta-analysis comparing CBT and psychodynamic psychotherapy suggested the approaches were equally effective in the short term. In contrast, a 2013 meta-analyses suggested that CBT, interpersonal therapy, and problem-solving therapy outperformed psychodynamic psychotherapy and behavioural activation in the treatment of depression.

Anxiety Disorders

CBT has been shown to be effective in the treatment of adults with anxiety disorders. A basic concept in some CBT treatments used in anxiety disorders is in vivo exposure. CBT-exposure therapy refers to the direct confrontation of feared objects, activities, or situations by a patient. Results from a 2018 systematic review found a high strength of evidence that CBT-exposure therapy can reduce PTSD symptoms and lead to the loss of a PTSD diagnosis.

For example, a woman with PTSD who fears the location where she was assaulted may be assisted by her therapist in going to that location and directly confronting those fears. Likewise, a person with social anxiety disorder who fears public speaking may be instructed to directly confront those fears by giving a speech. This “two-factor” model is often credited to O. Hobart Mowrer. Through exposure to the stimulus, this harmful conditioning can be “unlearned” (referred to as extinction and habituation). Studies have provided evidence that when examining animals and humans that glucocorticoids may possibly lead to a more successful extinction learning during exposure therapy. For instance, glucocorticoids can prevent aversive learning episodes from being retrieved and heighten reinforcement of memory traces creating a non-fearful reaction in feared situations. A combination of glucocorticoids and exposure therapy may be a better improved treatment for treating patients with anxiety disorders.

A 2015 Cochrane review also found that CBT for symptomatic management of non-specific chest pain is probably effective in the short term. However, the findings were limited by small trials and the evidence was considered of questionable quality.

Bipolar Disorder

Many studies show CBT, combined with pharmacotherapy, is effective on improving depressive symptoms, mania severity and psychosocial functioning with mild to moderate effects, and that it is better than medication alone.

Psychosis

In long-term psychoses, CBT is used to complement medication and is adapted to meet individual needs. Interventions particularly related to these conditions include exploring reality testing, changing delusions and hallucinations, examining factors which precipitate relapse, and managing relapses. Meta-analyses confirm the effectiveness of metacognitive training (MCT) for the improvement of positive symptoms (e.g., delusions).

Schizophrenia

A Cochrane review reported CBT had “no effect on long‐term risk of relapse” and no additional effect above standard care. A 2015 systematic review investigated the effects of CBT compared with other psychosocial therapies for people with schizophrenia and determined that there is no clear advantage over other, often less expensive, interventions but acknowledged that better quality evidence is needed before firm conclusions can be drawn.

With Older Adults

CBT is used to help people of all ages, but the therapy should be adjusted based on the age of the patient with whom the therapist is dealing. Older individuals in particular have certain characteristics that need to be acknowledged and the therapy altered to account for these differences thanks to age. Of the small number of studies examining CBT for the management of depression in older people, there is currently no strong support.

Prevention of Mental Illness

For anxiety disorders, use of CBT with people at risk has significantly reduced the number of episodes of generalised anxiety disorder and other anxiety symptoms, and also given significant improvements in explanatory style, hopelessness, and dysfunctional attitudes. In another study, 3% of the group receiving the CBT intervention developed generalised anxiety disorder by 12 months postintervention compared with 14% in the control group. Subthreshold panic disorder sufferers were found to significantly benefit from use of CBT. Use of CBT was found to significantly reduce social anxiety prevalence.

For depressive disorders, a stepped-care intervention (watchful waiting, CBT and medication if appropriate) achieved a 50% lower incidence rate in a patient group aged 75 or older. Another depression study found a neutral effect compared to personal, social, and health education, and usual school provision, and included a comment on potential for increased depression scores from people who have received CBT due to greater self recognition and acknowledgement of existing symptoms of depression and negative thinking styles. A further study also saw a neutral result. A meta-study of the Coping with Depression course, a cognitive behavioural intervention delivered by a psychoeducational method, saw a 38% reduction in risk of major depression.

For people at risk of psychosis, in 2014 the UK National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) recommended preventive CBT.

Pathological and Problem Gambling

CBT is also used for pathological and problem gambling. The percentage of people who problem gamble is 1-3% around the world. Cognitive behavioural therapy develops skills for relapse prevention and someone can learn to control their mind and manage high-risk cases. There is evidence of efficacy of CBT for treating pathological and problem gambling at immediate follow up, however the longer term efficacy of CBT for it is currently unknown.

Smoking Cessation

CBT looks at the habit of smoking cigarettes as a learned behaviour, which later evolves into a coping strategy to handle daily stressors. Because smoking is often easily accessible, and quickly allows the user to feel good, it can take precedence over other coping strategies, and eventually work its way into everyday life during non-stressful events as well. CBT aims to target the function of the behaviour, as it can vary between individuals, and works to inject other coping mechanisms in place of smoking. CBT also aims to support individuals suffering from strong cravings, which are a major reported reason for relapse during treatment.

In a 2008 controlled study out of Stanford University School of Medicine, suggested CBT may be an effective tool to help maintain abstinence. The results of 304 random adult participants were tracked over the course of one year. During this program, some participants were provided medication, CBT, 24 hour phone support, or some combination of the three methods. At 20 weeks, the participants who received CBT had a 45% abstinence rate, versus non-CBT participants, who had a 29% abstinence rate. Overall, the study concluded that emphasizing cognitive and behavioural strategies to support smoking cessation can help individuals build tools for long term smoking abstinence.

Mental health history can affect the outcomes of treatment. Individuals with a history of depressive disorders had a lower rate of success when using CBT alone to combat smoking addiction.

A Cochrane review was unable to find evidence of any difference between CBT and hypnosis for smoking cessation. While this may be evidence of no effect, further research may uncover an effect of CBT for smoking cessation.

Substance Abuse Disorders

Studies have shown CBT to be an effective treatment for substance abuse. For individuals with substance abuse disorders, CBT aims to reframe maladaptive thoughts, such as denial, minimising and catastrophising thought patterns, with healthier narratives. Specific techniques include identifying potential triggers and developing coping mechanisms to manage high-risk situations. Research has shown CBT to be particularly effective when combined with other therapy-based treatments or medication.

Eating Disorders

Though many forms of treatment can support individuals with eating disorders, CBT is proven to be a more effective treatment than medications and interpersonal psychotherapy alone. CBT aims to combat major causes of distress such as negative cognitions surrounding body weight, shape and size. CBT therapists also work with individuals to regulate strong emotions and thoughts that lead to dangerous compensatory behaviours. CBT is the first line of treatment for Bulimia Nervosa, and Eating Disorder Non-Specific. While there is evidence to support the efficacy of CBT for bulimia nervosa and binging, the evidence is somewhat variable and limited by small study sizes.

Internet Addiction

Research has identified Internet addiction as a new clinical disorder that causes relational, occupational, and social problems. Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) has been suggested as the treatment of choice for Internet addiction, and addiction recovery in general has used CBT as part of treatment planning.

Prevention of Occupational Stress

A Cochrane review of interventions aimed at preventing psychological stress in healthcare workers found that CBT was more effective than no intervention but no more effective than alternative stress-reduction interventions.

With Autistic Adults

Emerging evidence for cognitive behavioural interventions aimed at reducing symptoms of depression, anxiety, and obsessive-compulsive disorder in autistic adults without intellectual disability has been identified through a systematic review. While the research was focused on adults, cognitive behavioural interventions have also been beneficial to autistic children.

Access and Delivery of CBT

Therapist

A typical CBT programme would consist of face-to-face sessions between patient and therapist, made up of 6-18 sessions of around an hour each with a gap of 1-3 weeks between sessions. This initial programme might be followed by some booster sessions, for instance after one month and three months. CBT has also been found to be effective if patient and therapist type in real time to each other over computer links.

Cognitive behavioural therapy is most closely allied with the scientist-practitioner model in which clinical practice and research is informed by a scientific perspective, clear operationalisation of the problem, and an emphasis on measurement, including measuring changes in cognition and behaviour and in the attainment of goals. These are often met through “homework” assignments in which the patient and the therapist work together to craft an assignment to complete before the next session. The completion of these assignments – which can be as simple as a person suffering from depression attending some kind of social event – indicates a dedication to treatment compliance and a desire to change. The therapists can then logically gauge the next step of treatment based on how thoroughly the patient completes the assignment. Effective cognitive behavioural therapy is dependent on a therapeutic alliance between the healthcare practitioner and the person seeking assistance. Unlike many other forms of psychotherapy, the patient is very involved in CBT. For example, an anxious patient may be asked to talk to a stranger as a homework assignment, but if that is too difficult, he or she can work out an easier assignment first. The therapist needs to be flexible and willing to listen to the patient rather than acting as an authority figure.

Computerised or Internet-Delivered

Although computerised cognitive behavioural therapy (CCBT) has been a topic of sustained controversy, it has been described by NICE as a “generic term for delivering CBT via an interactive computer interface delivered by a personal computer, internet, or interactive voice response system”, instead of face-to-face with a human therapist. It is also known as internet-delivered cognitive behavioural therapy (ICBT). CCBT has potential to improve access to evidence-based therapies, and to overcome the prohibitive costs and lack of availability sometimes associated with retaining a human therapist. In this context, it is important not to confuse CBT with ‘computer-based training’, which nowadays is more commonly referred to as e-Learning.

CCBT has been found in meta-studies to be cost-effective and often cheaper than usual care, including for anxiety. Studies have shown that individuals with social anxiety and depression experienced improvement with online CBT-based methods. A review of current CCBT research in the treatment of OCD in children found this interface to hold great potential for future treatment of OCD in youths and adolescent populations. Additionally, most internet interventions for posttraumatic stress disorder use CCBT. CCBT is also predisposed to treating mood disorders amongst non-heterosexual populations, who may avoid face-to-face therapy from fear of stigma. However presently CCBT programmes seldom cater to these populations.

A key issue in CCBT use is low uptake and completion rates, even when it has been clearly made available and explained. CCBT completion rates and treatment efficacy have been found in some studies to be higher when use of CCBT is supported personally, with supporters not limited only to therapists, than when use is in a self-help form alone. Another approach to improving the uptake and completion rate, as well as the treatment outcome, is to design software that supports the formation of a strong therapeutic alliance between the user and the technology.

In February 2006 NICE recommended that CCBT be made available for use within the NHS across England and Wales for patients presenting with mild-to-moderate depression, rather than immediately opting for antidepressant medication, and CCBT is made available by some health systems. The 2009 NICE guideline recognised that there are likely to be a number of computerized CBT products that are useful to patients, but removed endorsement of any specific product.

A relatively new avenue of research is the combination of artificial intelligence and CCBT. It has been proposed to use modern technology to create CCBT that simulates face-to-face therapy. This might be achieved in cognitive behaviour therapy for a specific disorder using the comprehensive domain knowledge of CBT. One area where this has been attempted is the specific domain area of social anxiety in those who stutter.

Smartphone App-Delivered

Another new method of access is the use of mobile app or smartphone applications to deliver self-help or guided CBT. Technology companies are developing mobile-based artificial intelligence chatbot applications in delivering CBT as an early intervention to support mental health, to build psychological resilience and to promote emotional well-being. Artificial intelligence (AI) text-based conversational application delivered securely and privately over smartphone devices have the ability to scale globally and offer contextual and always-available support. Active research is underway including real world data studies that measure effectiveness and engagement of text-based smartphone chatbot apps for delivery of CBT using a text-based conversational interface.

Reading Self-Help Materials

Enabling patients to read self-help CBT guides has been shown to be effective by some studies. However one study found a negative effect in patients who tended to ruminate, and another meta-analysis found that the benefit was only significant when the self-help was guided (e.g. by a medical professional).

Group Educational Course

Patient participation in group courses has been shown to be effective. In a meta-analysis reviewing evidence-based treatment of OCD in children, individual CBT was found to be more efficacious than group CBT.

Types

BCBT

Brief cognitive behavioural therapy (BCBT) is a form of CBT which has been developed for situations in which there are time constraints on the therapy sessions. BCBT takes place over a couple of sessions that can last up to 12 accumulated hours by design. This technique was first implemented and developed on soldiers overseas in active duty by David M. Rudd to prevent suicide. Breakdown of treatment:

  • Orientation:
    • Commitment to treatment.
    • Crisis response and safety planning.
    • Means restriction.
    • Survival kit.
    • Reasons for living card.
    • Model of suicidality.
    • Treatment journal.
    • Lessons learned.
  • Skill focus:
    • Skill development worksheets.
    • Coping cards.
    • Demonstration.
    • Practice.
    • Skill refinement.
  • Relapse prevention:
    • Skill generalisation.
    • Skill refinement.

Cognitive Emotional Behavioural Therapy

Cognitive emotional behavioural therapy (CEBT) is a form of CBT developed initially for individuals with eating disorders but now used with a range of problems including anxiety, depression, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and anger problems. It combines aspects of CBT and dialectical behavioural therapy and aims to improve understanding and tolerance of emotions in order to facilitate the therapeutic process. It is frequently used as a “pre-treatment” to prepare and better equip individuals for longer-term therapy.

Structured Cognitive Behavioural Training

Structured cognitive behavioural training (SCBT) is a cognitive-based process with core philosophies that draw heavily from CBT. Like CBT, SCBT asserts that behaviour is inextricably related to beliefs, thoughts and emotions. SCBT also builds on core CBT philosophy by incorporating other well-known modalities in the fields of behavioural health and psychology: most notably, Albert Ellis’s rational emotive behaviour therapy. SCBT differs from CBT in two distinct ways. First, SCBT is delivered in a highly regimented format. Second, SCBT is a predetermined and finite training process that becomes personalized by the input of the participant. SCBT is designed with the intention to bring a participant to a specific result in a specific period of time. SCBT has been used to challenge addictive behaviour, particularly with substances such as tobacco, alcohol and food, and to manage diabetes and subdue stress and anxiety. SCBT has also been used in the field of criminal psychology in the effort to reduce recidivism.

Moral Reconation Therapy

Moral reconation therapy, a type of CBT used to help felons overcome antisocial personality disorder (ASPD), slightly decreases the risk of further offending. It is generally implemented in a group format because of the risk of offenders with ASPD being given one-on-one therapy reinforces narcissistic behavioural characteristics, and can be used in correctional or outpatient settings. Groups usually meet weekly for two to six months.

Stress Inoculation Training

This type of therapy uses a blend of cognitive, behavioural and some humanistic training techniques to target the stressors of the client. This usually is used to help clients better cope with their stress or anxiety after stressful events. This is a three-phase process that trains the client to use skills that they already have to better adapt to their current stressors. The first phase is an interview phase that includes psychological testing, client self-monitoring, and a variety of reading materials. This allows the therapist to individually tailor the training process to the client. Clients learn how to categorize problems into emotion-focused or problem-focused, so that they can better treat their negative situations. This phase ultimately prepares the client to eventually confront and reflect upon their current reactions to stressors, before looking at ways to change their reactions and emotions in relation to their stressors. The focus is conceptualisation.

The second phase emphasizes the aspect of skills acquisition and rehearsal that continues from the earlier phase of conceptualisation. The client is taught skills that help them cope with their stressors. These skills are then practised in the space of therapy. These skills involve self-regulation, problem-solving, interpersonal communication skills, etc.

The third and final phase is the application and following through of the skills learned in the training process. This gives the client opportunities to apply their learned skills to a wide range of stressors. Activities include role-playing, imagery, modelling, etc. In the end, the client will have been trained on a preventive basis to inoculate personal, chronic, and future stressors by breaking down their stressors into problems they will address in long-term, short-term, and intermediate coping goals.

Activity-Guided CBT: Group-Knitting

A newly developed group therapy model based on Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) integrates knitting into the therapeutic process and has been proven to yield reliable and promising results. The foundation for this novel approach to CBT is the frequently emphasized notion that therapy success depends on the embeddedness of the therapy method in the patients’ natural routine. Similar to standard group-based Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, patients meet once a week in a group of 10 to 15 patients and knit together under the instruction of a trained psychologist or mental health professional. Central for the therapy is the patient’s imaginative ability to assign each part of the wool to a certain thought. During the therapy, the wool is carefully knitted, creating a knitted piece of any form. This therapeutic process teaches the patient to meaningfully align thought, by (physically) creating a coherent knitted piece. Moreover, since CBT emphasizes the behaviour as a result of cognition, the knitting illustrates how thoughts (which are tried to be imaginary tight to the wool) materialise into the reality surrounding us.

Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Behavioural Hypnotherapy

Mindfulness-based cognitive behavioural hypnotherapy (MCBH) is a form of CBT focusing on awareness in reflective approach with addressing of subconscious tendencies. It is more the process that contains basically three phases that are used for achieving wanted goals.

Unified Protocol

The Unified Protocol for Transdiagnostic Treatment of Emotional Disorders (UP) is a form of CBT, developed by David H. Barlow and researchers at Boston University, that can be applied to a range of depression and anxiety disorders. The rationale is that anxiety and depression disorders often occur together due to common underlying causes and can efficiently be treated together.

The UP includes a common set of components:

  • Psycho-education.
  • Cognitive reappraisal.
  • Emotion regulation.
  • Changing behaviour.

The UP has been shown to produce equivalent results to single-diagnosis protocols for specific disorders, such as OCD and social anxiety disorder. Several studies have shown that the UP is easier to disseminate as compared to single-diagnosis protocols.

Criticisms

Relative Effectiveness

The research conducted for CBT has been a topic of sustained controversy. While some researchers write that CBT is more effective than other treatments, many other researchers and practitioners have questioned the validity of such claims. For example, one study determined CBT to be superior to other treatments in treating anxiety and depression. However, researchers responding directly to that study conducted a re-analysis and found no evidence of CBT being superior to other bona fide treatments, and conducted an analysis of thirteen other CBT clinical trials and determined that they failed to provide evidence of CBT superiority. In cases where CBT has been reported to be statistically better than other psychological interventions in terms of primary outcome measures, effect sizes were small and suggested that those differences were clinically meaningless and insignificant. Moreover, on secondary outcomes (i.e. measures of general functioning) no significant differences have been typically found between CBT and other treatments.

A major criticism has been that clinical studies of CBT efficacy (or any psychotherapy) are not double-blind (i.e. either the subjects or the therapists in psychotherapy studies are not blind to the type of treatment). They may be single-blinded, i.e. the rater may not know the treatment the patient received, but neither the patients nor the therapists are blinded to the type of therapy given (two out of three of the persons involved in the trial, i.e., all of the persons involved in the treatment, are unblinded). The patient is an active participant in correcting negative distorted thoughts, thus quite aware of the treatment group they are in.

The importance of double-blinding was shown in a meta-analysis that examined the effectiveness of CBT when placebo control and blindedness were factored in. Pooled data from published trials of CBT in schizophrenia, major depressive disorder (MDD), and bipolar disorder that used controls for non-specific effects of intervention were analysed. This study concluded that CBT is no better than non-specific control interventions in the treatment of schizophrenia and does not reduce relapse rates; treatment effects are small in treatment studies of MDD, and it is not an effective treatment strategy for prevention of relapse in bipolar disorder. For MDD, the authors note that the pooled effect size was very low. Nevertheless, the methodological processes used to select the studies in the previously mentioned meta-analysis and the worth of its findings have been called into question.

Declining Effectiveness

Additionally, a 2015 meta-analysis revealed that the positive effects of CBT on depression have been declining since 1977. The overall results showed two different declines in effect sizes: 1) an overall decline between 1977 and 2014, and 2) a steeper decline between 1995 and 2014. Additional sub-analysis revealed that CBT studies where therapists in the test group were instructed to adhere to the Beck CBT manual had a steeper decline in effect sizes since 1977 than studies where therapists in the test group were instructed to use CBT without a manual. The authors reported that they were unsure why the effects were declining but did list inadequate therapist training, failure to adhere to a manual, lack of therapist experience, and patients’ hope and faith in its efficacy waning as potential reasons. The authors did mention that the current study was limited to depressive disorders only.

High Drop-Out Rates

Furthermore, other researchers write that CBT studies have high drop-out rates compared to other treatments. CBT drop out rates were found to be 17% higher than other therapies in one meta-analysis. This high drop-out rate is also evident in the treatment of several disorders, particularly the eating disorder anorexia nervosa, which is commonly treated with CBT. Those treated with CBT have a high chance of dropping out of therapy before completion and reverting to their anorexia behaviours.

Other researchers conducting an analysis of treatments for youths who self-injure found similar drop-out rates in CBT and DBT groups. In this study, the researchers analysed several clinical trials that measured the efficacy of CBT administered to youths who self-injure. The researchers concluded that none of them were found to be efficacious.

Philosophical Concerns with CBT Methods

The methods employed in CBT research have not been the only criticisms; some individuals have called its theory and therapy into question.

Slife and Williams write that one of the hidden assumptions in CBT is that of determinism, or the absence of free will. They argue that CBT holds that external stimuli from the environment enter the mind, causing different thoughts that cause emotional states: nowhere in CBT theory is agency, or free will, accounted for.

Another criticism of CBT theory, especially as applied to major depressive disorder (MDD), is that it confounds the symptoms of the disorder with its causes.

Side Effects

CBT is generally regarded as having very few if any side effects. Calls have been made by some for more appraisal of possible side effects of CBT. Many randomised trials of psychological interventions like CBT do not monitor potential harms to the patient. In contrast, randomised trials of pharmacological interventions are much more likely to take adverse effects into consideration.

However, a 2017 meta-analysis revealed that adverse events are not common in children receiving CBT and, furthermore, that CBT is associated with fewer dropouts than either placebo or medications. Nevertheless, CBT therapists do sometimes report ‘unwanted events’ and side effects in their outpatients with “negative wellbeing/distress” being the most frequent.

Socio-Political Concerns

The writer and group analyst Farhad Dalal questions the socio-political assumptions behind the introduction of CBT. According to one reviewer, Dalal connects the rise of CBT with “the parallel rise of neoliberalism, with its focus on marketization, efficiency, quantification and managerialism”, and he questions the scientific basis of CBT, suggesting that “the ‘science’ of psychological treatment is often less a scientific than a political contest”. In his book, Dalal also questions the ethical basis of CBT.

Society and Culture

The UK’s National Health Service announced in 2008 that more therapists would be trained to provide CBT at government expense as part of an initiative called Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT). The NICE said that CBT would become the mainstay of treatment for non-severe depression, with medication used only in cases where CBT had failed. Therapists complained that the data does not fully support the attention and funding CBT receives. Psychotherapist and professor Andrew Samuels stated that this constitutes “a coup, a power play by a community that has suddenly found itself on the brink of corralling an enormous amount of money … Everyone has been seduced by CBT’s apparent cheapness.” The UK Council for Psychotherapy issued a press release in 2012 saying that the IAPT’s policies were undermining traditional psychotherapy and criticised proposals that would limit some approved therapies to CBT, claiming that they restricted patients to “a watered down version of cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), often delivered by very lightly trained staff”.

The NICE also recommends offering CBT to people suffering from schizophrenia, as well as those at risk of suffering from a psychotic episode.

Book: Pocket Therapy for Anxiety

Book Title:

Pocket Therapy for Anxiety: Quick CBT Skills to Find Calm (New Harbinger Pocket Therapy).

Author(s): Edmund J. Bourne.

Year: 2020.

Edition: First (1st).

Publisher: New Harbinger.

Type(s): Paperback and Kindle.

Synopsis:

Quick, simple, and effective anxiety relief that fits right in your pocket-so you can manage your symptoms anytime, anywhere.

If you suffer from anxiety, you may try to avoid the situations that cause you to feel uneasy. But avoidance is not the answer-and letting your fears and worries constantly hold you back will ultimately keep you from living the life you truly want. So, how can you learn to cope with your anxiety in the moment? This little book can help you face your fears and take charge of your anxiety-wherever or whenever it shows up.

From the author of The Anxiety and Phobia Workbook and Coping with Anxiety, Pocket Therapy for Anxiety offers immediate, user-friendly, and evidence-based strategies to help you manage anxiety, panic, and fear. The exercises in this book can be done in the moment, whenever you feel anxious, and will help you move past your fears and start living the life you were meant to live.

You will learn to:

  • Relax your body and mind.
  • Stop expecting the worst.
  • Get regular exercise and eat right to stay calm.
  • Turn off worry and cope on the spot.
  • And much, much more…

Do not let anxiety keep you one step behind. This little book will show you how to face your fears, overcome panic when it happens, and take charge of your anxiety for good!

What is the Taylor Manifest Anxiety Scale?

Introduction

The Taylor Manifest Anxiety Scale, often shortened to TMAS, is a test of anxiety as a personality trait, and was created by Janet Taylor in 1953 to identify subjects who would be useful in the study of anxiety disorders. The TMAS originally consisted of 50 true or false questions a person answers by reflecting on themselves, in order to determine their anxiety level. Janet Taylor spent her career in the field of psychology studying anxiety and gender development.

Her scale has often been used to separate normal participants from those who would be considered to have pathological anxiety levels. The TMAS has been shown to have high test-retest reliability. The test is for adults but in 1956 a children’s form was developed. The test was very popular for many years after its development but is now used infrequently.

Refer to Zung Self-Rating Anxiety Scale.

Development and Validation

The TMAS has been proven reliable using test-retest reliability. O’Connor, Lorr, and Stafford found there were five general factors in the scale: chronic anxiety or worry, increased physiological reactivity, sleep disturbances associated with inner strain, sense of personal inadequacy, and motor tension. This study showed that persons administered the test could be display different anxiety levels across these areas. O’Connor, Lorr, and Stafford’s realisation allows patients and their doctors to better understand which dimension of anxiety needs to be addressed.

Childhood and Adolescence

The Children’s Manifest Anxiety Scale, sometimes shortened to the CMAS, was created in 1956.

This scale was closely modelled after the Taylor Manifest Anxiety Scale. It was developed so that the TMAS could be applied to a broader range of people, specifically children.

Kitano tested the validity of the CMAS by comparing students who were placed in special education classes versus those placed in regular classrooms. Kitano proposed the idea that children who were in special education classes were more likely to have higher anxiety than those in regular classrooms. Using the CMAS, Kitano found boys tested in the special education classes had higher anxiety scores than their regular classroom counterparts.

Hafner tested the reliability of the CMAS with the knowledge that the TMAS had a feminine bias. Hafner found that the CMAS did not have a female bias. He only found two questions that females always scored higher on than their male counterparts.

As the test stands now, the suggestion is to compare the female and male participants separately. Castaneda found significant differences across different grade levels, indicating that as students develop they are affected differentially by various stressors.

Gender Differences

Although the CMAS proved to not have a feminine bias, Quarter and Laxer found that females tend to score higher on the TMAS than their male counterparts. An example of these questions endorsed more frequently by females is, “I cry easily”. Similarly, Goodstein and Goldberger found that 17 of the 38 questions were more likely to be endorsed by females than males. Gall found that when she tested the femininity versus masculinity qualities of men and women, then compared them to the TMAS score, the people that were more feminine, either male or female, were more likely to have a positive correlation with their anxiety level score. Based on this, Gall agreed with previous research that stated the TMAS is more strongly female based. Hafner, however, found that the CMAS does not reflect the gender difference as the girls that took the children’s test only scored higher than the boys consistently on two of the questions.

Cultural Differences

Since the TMAS was introduced in 1953, comprehensive research has been done regarding the validity of the scale. across different cultures. In 1967, a study of cross-cultural differences in the scale was done between 9 year-old Japanese, French, and American students. The data concluded that Japanese and French students tested significantly lower on anxiety scores compared to the American students. Thus, there are strong cross-cultural differences related to the scores on the TMAS. Additional studies of the validity of the TMAS include a study between South African Natives and South African Europeans in 1979. Both groups included individuals with varying levels of education. This study found that the TMAS is sensitive to certain cross-cultural differences, but precautions should be taken when interpreting scores from the scale in non-Western cultures, regardless of the individual’s education level.

The Adult Manifest Anxiety Scale

In 2003, the Adult Manifest Anxiety Scale (AMAS) was introduced. It was made for three different age groups. The AMAS takes into account age-related situations that affect an individual’s anxiety. The divisions include:

  • One scale for adults (AMA-A);
  • One scale for college students (AMAS-C), and
  • The other for the elderly population (AMAS-E).

Each scale is geared towards examining situations specific to that age group. For example, the AMAS-C has items pertaining specifically to college students, such as questions about anxiety of the future.

The AMAS-A is geared more toward mid-life issues, and the AMAS-E has specific anxieties the older population deals with, such as fear of aging and dying. The AMAS-A contains 36 items. It has 14 questions relating to worry/oversensitivity, nine questions about physiological anxiety, seven questions about social concerns/stress, and six questions about lies. An example of an age appropriate item for this scale is, “I am worried about my job performance”. The AMAS-C contains 49 items about the same topics, but incorporates 15 items related specifically to test anxiety. Questions relating to the items on this scale include, “I worry too much about tests and exams”. This scale is similar in structure to the CMAS discussed above. The AMAS-E contains 44 items related to worry/oversensitivity, physiological anxiety, lying, and the fear of aging. Twenty-three of the questions on the AMAS-E are related to worry/oversensitivity, but The Fear of Aging category of this scale includes items such as, “I worry about becoming senile”. Similar to the TMAS, the AMAS can be given in a group or individual setting, and the person responds either yes or no to each item listed according to if it pertains to themselves or not. The more items that are answered yes, suggest a higher level of anxiety. The scale has been said to be easy to complete and practical, because it takes only about 10 minutes to complete and just a few minutes to score.

Applications and Limitations of AMAS

The AMAS has a broad range of applications, but also a number of limitations. The AMAS can be used in clinical settings, career counselling centres on campuses, hospices, nursing homes, and to monitor the progress and effectiveness of psychotherapy and drug treatment. Effective psychotherapy is indicated by a decrease in AMAS. Almost all college students will experience some type of stress in their academic career. Examples of their stress range from text anxiety to worry of the future after graduation. The AMAS-C items can provide psychologists with a statistical reference point to judge the student’s level of anxiety compared to other college students. A limitation of the AMAS-C is that it does not lend insight into the factors that are influencing the students anxiety, such as lack of studying and social factors. A more formal and extensive level of testing is necessary to resolve this limitation.

Utility

The utility of the TMAS is that it is a way to relate anxiety directly to performance in a certain area. The scale is able to measure anxiety levels and use the scores to determine performance on certain tasks. In some studies, researchers found that high anxiety (high drive) participants would make a greater number of mistakes, therefore taking longer for the participants to reach the learned criterion, whereas participants with low anxiety (low drive) would reach the learned criterion quicker. The TMAS was able to measure that anxiety, so the researchers could make inclusions or exclusions of the participants for their specific studies. This would allow them to achieve the results they want. The TMAS was also a way to relate intelligence to anxiety. Studies have shown there is a possible correlation between anxiety and academic achievement, but they do not recommend it be the sole predictor of achievement. It should be paired with other tests in order to make an accurate prediction.

Decline

The TMAS scale was frequently used in the past, however, its use has declined over the years due to problems with the validity of this self-report measure. Participants use their own judgement when answering questions, which causes internal and construct validity issues, which makes the interpretation of results difficult. Another possible reason this scale has declined in its use over the years is that researchers seemed to only get results of anxiety from participants under threat conditions and not under non-threat conditions, which again questioned the scale’s validity.

Awards

The Association for Psychological Science established an award in honour of Janet Taylor Spence for her contributions to psychology. Receiving this award means that the psychologist made honourable, new, creative, and cutting edge contributions to research and impact in the early years of their career, as Janet Taylor did during her career. The award is named the Janet Taylor Spence Award for Transformative Early Career Contributions.

Reference

Taylor, J. (1953). A Personality Scale of Manifest Anxiety. The Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology. 48(2), pp.285-290. doi:10.1037/h0056264.

What is the Zung Self-Rating Anxiety Scale?

Introduction

The Zung Self-Rating Anxiety Scale (SAS) was designed by William W. K. Zung M.D, (1929-1992) a professor of psychiatry from Duke University, to quantify a patient’s level of anxiety.

Background

The SAS is a 20-item self-report assessment device built to measure anxiety levels, based on scoring in 4 groups of manifestations: cognitive, autonomic, motor and central nervous system symptoms. Answering the statements a person should indicate how much each statement applies to him or her within a period of one or two weeks prior to taking the test. Each question is scored on a Likert-type scale of 1-4 (based on these replies: “a little of the time,” “some of the time,” “good part of the time,” “most of the time”). Some questions are negatively worded to avoid the problem of set response. Overall assessment is done by total score.

The Anxiety Index

The total raw scores range from 20-80. The raw score then needs to be converted to an “Anxiety Index” score using the chart on the paper version of the test that can be found on the link below. The “Anxiety Index” score can then be used on this scale below to determine the clinical interpretation of one’s level of anxiety:

  • 20-44: Normal Range.
  • 45-59: Mild to Moderate Anxiety Levels.
  • 60-74: Marked to Severe Anxiety Levels.
  • 75 and above: Extreme Anxiety Levels.

You can find an online version of the SAS here.

Refer to Zung Self-Rating Depression Scale and Taylor Manifest Anxiety Scale (TMAS).

PDF version of test with Raw Score-Index Score Conversion Table.

References

Zung, W.A.K. (1974). The Measurement of Affects: Depression and Anxiety. Modern Problems of Pharmacopsychiatry. 7(0), pp.170-188. doi: 10.1159/000395075.

Zung, W.A.K. (1971) A Rating Instrument for Anxiety Disorders. Psychosomatics. 12(6), pp.371-379. doi: 10.1016/S0033-3182(71)71479-0.

Is It Useful to Screen for Anxiety using the GAD-7 in Pregnant Women?

Research Paper Title

Validation of the Generalised Anxiety Disorder Screener (GAD-7) in Spanish Pregnant Women.

Background

Anxiety during pregnancy is one of the most common mental health problems and a significant risk factor for postpartum depression. The Generalised Anxiety Disorder-7 (GAD-7) is one of the most widely used self-report measures of anxiety symptoms available in multiple languages. This study evaluates the psychometric properties and underlying factor structures of the Spanish GAD-7 among pregnant women in Spain.

Methods

Spanish-speaking pregnant women (N = 385) were recruited from an urban obstetrics setting in Northern Spain. Women completed the GAD-7 and the anxiety subscale of the Symptom Checklist (SCL90-R) at three time points, once per trimester. The reliability, concurrent validity, and factor analyses were conducted to evaluate the psychometric properties and factor structure, respectively.

Results

In the first trimester, the GAD-7 demonstrated good internal consistency (a = 0.89). GAD-7 is positively correlated with SCL90-R (anxiety subscale; r=0.75; p < 0.001). The proposed one-factor structure is found using exploratory factor analysis -FACTOR programme – with Unweighted Least Squares procedure and optimal implementation of parallel analysis (GFI = 0.99).

Conclusions

Health providers should screen for anxiety using the GAD-7 during pregnancy among urban Spanish-speaking samples to provide appropriate follow-up care.

Reference

Soto-Balbuena, C. Rodriguez-Munoz, M.F. & Le, H-N. (2021) Validation of the Generalized Anxiety Disorder Screener (GAD-7) in Spanish Pregnant Women. Psicothema. 33(1), pp.164-170. doi: 10.7334/psicothema2020.167.