Earlier this week, students, faculty and professionals from local universities and mental health organizations visited the Beck Institute for Cognitive Therapy and Research to watch a live patient session, conducted by Dr. Aaron Beck, followed by a case conference. Although we cannot disclose the particulars of the case, below are some of the general points that came up, from participants in attendance, in a Q & A session with Dr. Beck:
That patients often need to test their automatic thoughts and beliefs by doing behavioral experiments in order to fully change their ideas. Dr. Beck also emphasized the importance of the therapeutic alliance in facilitating patient progress. Dr. Beck observed where anxiety is concerned there are often images and thought patterns. Dr. Beck explained how he discovered images and their application to the Cognitive Model (see video clip here). He explained why it’s critical to build a patient’s confidence so that he or she can take some control over his or her symptoms, including anxious images. Thanks to all the professors, students and professionals who came to visit the Beck Institute!