Written by Psychlinks founder David Baxter, PhD in November 2006:

The facts are as follows:

1. CBT is a very effective component of a good treatment plan for many and probably most patients suffering from depression or anxiety disorders, and an excellent adjunct therapy for disorders such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and borderline personality disorder, among others.

2. Every study that has ever examined the issue has concluded the medication plus psychotherapy is more effective than either alone for depression and anxiety disorders, both in managing the initial symptoms or crisis and in preventing relapse.

3. CBT is NOT simply symptom management. Individuals suffering from disorders such as depression and the various manifestations of anxiety DO exhibit faulty and distorted patterns of thinking and self-talk and there is no longer any doubt that this contributes greatly to these disorders. Thus, addressing and altering those negative self-talk patterns should be an integral part of any treatment plan for most patients with these disorders.

4. In a total treatment plan, CBT is an excellent way of helping the patient acquire symptom or crisis management strategies. However, it is often the case that once that goal is reached, it may be necessary to use interpersonal therapies or other treatment approaches to address the underlying and more chronic issues.