Psychological Treatment of Phobic disorders

Systematic desensitisation and CBT

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1. What is empirical disputing?

  • Challenging irrational thoughts based upon the idea that they are not useful
  • Irrational thoughts aren't consistent with reality
  • Irrational thoughts based on logic
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2. An issue of CBT

  • Unable to treat phobias based on evolutionary survival factors
  • Involves lots of cognitive processes on the part of the patient this may be inappropriate for those with severe learning difficulties or severe phobic disorders, unlike SD which may be more appropriate reducing CBT's population validity
  • SD is more effective in treating phobias

3. Advantage of CBT

  • Is effective immediately
  • Could be considered a holistic treatment as it tackles both irrational thoughts and the behaviour that occurs as a result
  • More effective than SD

4. What is pragmatic disputing?

  • Challenging irrational thoughts based upon the idea that these thoughts aren't helpful
  • Challenging irrational thoughts based on logic
  • Challenging self-defeating thoughts based upon the idea that irrational thoughts are inconsistent with reality

5. What did Keller find?

  • 52% success rate using just CBT and a 85% success rate in using more drug treatment and CBT
  • There's no evidence of substitution of symptoms
  • 75% of patients responded well to SD


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