Behavioral therapy refers to a form of treatment, which aims atchanging unwanted behaviors. Behaviorism supposes that people learntheir behaviors, either healthy or unhealthy, from the environmentvia classical and operant conditioning (Counselling-directory.org,2017). Classical conditioning entails learning via association, whileoperant conditioning is the acquiring of behaviors throughreinforcement as well as punishment. Hence, the therapy functions onthe notion that if a behavior is learned, it is also possible tochange what is acquired. Behavioral therapy concentrates on problemsthat individuals face, and how they can be solved. The therapistsassess the feelings and thought processes, which are associated witha negative behavior and use behavior therapy to encourage positivechange. It is used to treat people suffering from mental disordersthat cause them to behave in unwanted manners. Illustrations of suchdisorders are anxiety, phobia and addictions(Counselling-directory.org, 2017).
Aversion therapy is an example of behavior therapy, since it is oneof the methods used by therapists to foster behavior change. Thetherapy involves pairing an unwanted behavior with an aversivestimulus in order to reduce the undesired habit(Counselling-directory.org, 2017). For instance, aversiontherapy can be used to help an alcoholic lose the desire to drink.Such an effect is achieved by prescribing medicine to be used by thealcoholic. The medication causes headaches, apprehension and nauseawhen mixed with an intoxicating drink. As a result, every instancethe individual drinks, he or she experiences the side effects of thedrug. Gradually, the alcoholic begins to associate drinking withnegative outcomes, like nausea. Aversion therapy hopes to ensure thatthe individual develops a negative attitude towards drinking, whichin turn assists in overcoming the alcohol addiction.
Cognitive therapy is founded on the rule that the way people thinkand perceive things has an ability to affect behavior as well asfeelings (Farmer & Chapman,2016). In specific, the therapy focuses on the reassessment ofnegative thinking so that people are able to acquire positiveperception. Therapists believe that our thinking, feelings andbehaviors are connected. The way individuals think and feelinfluences how they will behave. As such, when people thinknegatively, problematic behaviors develop. Cognitive therapy entailsthe therapist working in collaboration with a client, to assist inthe development of skills that make it possible to replace negativethoughts (Farmer & Chapman,2016). In the process, the behavior linked with a negativethought is also changed. For example, when a student fails in anexamination, he or she may begin to refer to him or herself as afailure. A negative thought pattern develops that encourages thestudent to fail in other examinations. Cognitive therapy works onchanging the student’s view of failure, towards one of an achiever,and ensures that the same student believes in their ability to excel.
Milieu is a phrase used to describe the social environment of aperson. Thus, milieu therapy is a form of treatment that includesaltering the environment with the intention of persuading a client todevelop advent coping techniques (Gelenberg,Bassuk &Schoonover, 2013).The objective of the therapy is to create a conducive surrounding,where positive change can happen. It is mainly educational, asclients are instructed on how to cope with certain behaviors. Forinstance, clients can be taught on the negativity linked with abehavior such as alcoholism. Thus, the knowledge is intended atimproving the capability of the client to work towards avoidingalcohol.
Counselling-directory.org. (2017). Behavioral therapy.Retrieved from: http://www.counselling-directory.org/behavioural.html
Farmer, R. F., & Chapman, A. L.(2016). Behavioralinterventions in cognitive behavior therapy.Washington: American Psychological Association.
Gelenberg, A. J., Bassuk, E. L., &Schoonover, S. C. (2013). ThePractitioner`s guide to psychoactive drugs.New York: Springer Scienceand Business Media.