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The key to getting better was learning about my illness, knowing what triggers my symptoms and how I can control them.

– former Skyland Trail client

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)

Our evidence-based CBT treatment program, combined with our holistic wellness approach, makes Skyland Trail one of the best treatment centers for depression, bipolar disorder, and anxiety. Our CBT residential treatment program may be the best next step for someone leaving a hospital or inpatient psychiatric treatment program. Our CBT day treatment program in Atlanta may help someone who is struggling with traditional outpatient psychotherapy or who is experiencing repeat psychiatric hospitalizations.

What is CBT?

Skyland Trail psychiatrist Dr. Mary Burns describes Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and how it is used to treat depression, bipolar illness and anxiety.

Skyland Trail Psychiatrist explains CBT

Understanding Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is a well-tested specialized type of psychotherapy shown to be effective for certain types of psychiatric illnesses. CBT suggests that individuals' thoughts, behaviors, and feelings are inextricably linked and affect one another. The goal of CBT is to control and change thinking, actions, and feelings through collection and use of observable data. Homework assignments and peer group reflections help in that process. 

What is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy?

In CBT sessions with patients, we first try to identify the maladaptive thoughts and then use logic and data to rethink those thoughts. For example, a person may think, “I’m worthless. I’m a terrible person. I’m going to get fired from my job.” By using CBT skills, a patient would first identify the thought and then figure out what emotion that brings up. In this case, if a person were to lose his or her job, he or she may be depressed or anxious. After identifying the emotion, we look at the validity of the thought by collecting data. 

For example, we ask the individual, “How have you done in the past?” and “What are your supervisor reports?” After collecting data, we look at the probability of that event actually happening and realize the unlikelihood of it taking place. By using CBT skills to evaluate the situation, the individual becomes less despairing, depressed and anxious.

Benefits of CBT for Depression, Anxiety & Mood Disorders

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy works well for individuals diagnosed with depressive disorders and anxiety disorders. Within anxiety disorders, CBT treats obsessive compulsive personality traits, phobias, social anxiety, generalized anxiety and, to some extent, post-traumatic stress disorder. 

CBT focuses on what a person is experiencing here and now; it is not focused on going back and reviewing the hurts of your childhood. This form of therapy is time-limited, meaning there are a limited number of therapy sessions in which patients learn a new skill set and how to incorporate it in their own lives. 

Our CBT recovery community is led by clinicians with specialized expertise in cognitive behavioral therapy. Ultimately, clients learning CBT develop skills to prevent mood problems, intrusive thoughts, and problematic behaviors from diminishing their quality of life. 

Holistic Path to Wellness

In addition to intensive one-on-one and group therapy sessions, our clients have access to nutritional counseling and wellness services. We are one of very few treatment programs in the country to integrate primary care with residential mental health treatment. Clients also have opportunities to rebuild self esteem and positive social interactions through our horticulture, art, music and vocational programs.

Progress comes in small steps. At Skyland Trail, clients can practice their new CBT skills in a patient and supportive environment. We support their gradual recovery as they advance through our levels of care, with the goal of helping them stabilize their mood, build positive relationships and manage stress appropriately.

CBT Program at Skyland Trail

CBT Program with Emily Wall

Primary Counselor Emily Wall, LMSW, explains the CBT Program at Skyland Trail.

CBT Program at Skyland Trail

Results of Treatment

Graduates of the CBT recovery community at Skyland Trail have a toolbox of strategies to keep them healthy. They are better able to recognize unhealthy thoughts and behaviors early and successfully change them before they impact mood. We help connect graduates with professionals in the community who can continue to support their progress and remind them of the great strides that were made in CBT at Skyland Trail.

Client Testimonial: Lisa's Journey

Lisa completed the psychiatric treatment program at Skyland Trail, learning skills to help manage her diagnosis of depression and anxiety. 

Lisa's Story

Is the CBT Program at Skyland Trail right for you?

Our admissions counselors are available to talk to you about your symptoms and treatment needs. Discover how the mental health treatment programs at Skyland Trail may help you address your symptoms and feel better.

Speak to an admissions counselor: 866-504-4966

Client Testimonial: Recovery is Possible

"I am most proud of learning to let go of outside expectations and self-imposed pressure and to be unapologetically myself. Now I feel, for the first time in my life, that I am happy. Rather than reaching for things or people to make me feel complete, I feel secure in the knowledge that who I am is enough."

Audrey's Story