Believes the addictive behaviour is caused by irrational/faulty thinking. There are different forms of faulty thinking - people over estimate their ability to control, predict and influence events. People minimise the negatives of their addiction and maximise the positives. People feel they have no control over the behaviour.
The explanation is easier to apply to maintenance and relapse of addiction rather than initation. It is likely other factors to contribute in the first place.
Often we intentionally chose to use addictive behaviour to cope with stress or problems. We will have positive expectations about the benefits of the behaviour/substance. We believe we have control of our behaviour
Beck believed addictions maintained due to 'vicious circle/cycle' We feel stressed/down so start the addiction. This can lead to social, health relationship problems. The problems lead to more stress/make us more down to so the cycle continues. It becomes a mental crutch which means the addiction is psychologically dependent. We feel we have lost control of the behaviour and that it is irrationally controlling us. Behaviour becomes less of a conscious and more of a habit. merges with behavioural explanation response in a stressful situation
people try to regain control over their behaviour but irrationally believe they can't. Therefore, give into psychological dependence. Irrationally believe happiness depends on continuing with addictive behaviour.
Studied regular and non regular gamblers; asked some of them to verbalise their thought processes. Found regular gamblers often personalised the machines and talked to them trying to control/explain wins and losses. Seemed to support cognitive explanations but some regular gamblers found it very difficult to verbalise their thoughts. This suggests gambling wasn't totally due to conscious thoughts, seeming to go against the idea of irrational thoughts.
Applied to smoking//
Smokers often show a psychological dependency on smoking. It's not simply the biological need for nicotine byt an irrational need to be able to smoke. It is viewed as a way of de-stressing and not being able to smoke creating anxiety. Often minimise negatives of their addiction. Irrational reliance on smoking and often believe they are in control of their habit/can quit anytime.
Applied to gambling//
Usually have an irrational view of how much they can predict/control events. Often use 'lucky numbers' during gambling. Minimise negatives such as big losses and maximise the wins.
- helps explain individual differences
-useful for explaining a number of addictions -both smoking and gambling
-treatments are successful and popular; available on the nhs
-cbt is often used alongside behavioural therapy as there is an overlap
-if addictions become unconscious and less about thought processes then suggest not entirely cognitive processes
-ignores physiological changes that happen in the body because of the addiction. There may be biological causes for maintaining addiction.
Can be learned in different ways:
classical conditioning -- make associations between feeling 'high' or 'happy' and certain cue. This then encourages us to continue with the pairing of cues and behaviour.
cue reactivity theory -- individuals…