c COGNITIVE BEHAVIORAL TREATMENT OF COCAINE ADDICTION d This .pdf document contains the course materials you must read. Simply keep scrolling down and read every page. To receive CEU credit after reading this file, please follow the directions at the end of the course.
Peachtree is approved to provide continuing education services by the National Association of Alcohol and Drug Addiction Counselors (NAADAC) and the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC), as well as by many individual state regulatory boards for most mental health related professionals, including: NAADAC # 205NBCC # 5701 California BBS PCE #1852 California Nursing #14780 Texas LMFT #181Texas LPC #444 Texas SW #CS1048Florida SW, MHC, MFT BAP #723 Kansas KBSRB #03-001Oklahoma SW CEP #2010-0001 Please see www.fastceus.com/approvals. php for a complete state-by-state and discipline listing of all our Board CEU Provider Approvals, or contact your Board directly if you have course credit approval questions. PeachTree Professional Education, Inc.
Richard K. Nongard, LMFT/CCH 15560 N. Frank L.
Wright Blvd, #B4-118 Scottsdale, AZ 85260 Voice: (800) 390-9536 Fax: (888) 877-6020 www.FastCEUs.com 1 P e ac h Tre e P r o f e ss i on a l E d u c a t i o n , I n c ... more. less.
. We Have What You Need cCognitive Behavioral Treatment of Cocaine Addiction d 3 CEU Credit Hours All materials copyright © Richard K. Nongard.<br><br> All rights reserved. No portion of this course may be reproduced without specific written consent of the author. Course Description: This course provides a fantastic practical overview of CBT applications for counseling and social work.<br><br> While the strategies given in this course discuss cocaine addiction treatment, they can easily be adapted to any addictive or behavioral compulsion - such as alcohol, tobacco, sexual obsession or spending. Course Objectives: The primary objectives of the course are to enable a mental health professional to: 1. Understand the practice methods of cognitive behavioral therapy.<br><br> 2.Develop treatment strategies for impacting clients addicted to cocaine by using CBT techniques. Purpose of this Course: The purpose of this CEU course is to provide discussion relevant to the mental health counselor on current treatment practices using CBT to impact cocaine addiction. Course Outline: Part 1: Course organization, Documentation and Introduction.<br><br> Part 2: Reading of the course materials (this document) Part 3: Administration and Completion of the Evaluation of Learning Quiz =========== 3.0 Clock Hours / CE Credits Your instructor is Richard K. Nongard , a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, Certified Clinical Hypnotherapist and a Certified Personal Fitness Trainer. PeachTree Professional Education, Inc.<br><br> 15560 N. Frank L. Wright Blvd, #B4-118 Scottsdale, AZ 85260 Voice: (800) 390-9536 Fax: (888) 877-6020 www.FastCEUs.com 2 COGNITIVE BEHAVIORAL THERAPY: Treatment of Cocaine Addiction 3 CE Credit Hours INTRODUCTION A message from your instructor, Richard K.<br><br> Nongard. Cognitive-behavioral Therapy (CBT) can be applied to virtually any emotional, behavioral or psychiatric condition. It is an effective model for helping, with more research behind it than any other modality of treatment.<br><br> This specific course applies a model of CBT to treatment of cocaine addiction, but the concepts and ideas can be easily extrapolated by the professional for the treatment of other addictive disorders, including tobacco addiction, alcohol abuse or behavioral compulsions such as obsessive sex or spending. The methods advocated are well defined in this text, and reading the materials and applying the interventions should service therapists and clients in a variety of situations, ranging from inpatient care, to creating structured outpatient individual therapy sessions. I hope you enjoy this course.<br><br> Should you ever have any questions about this or any PeachTree / FastCEUs.com course, please do not hesitate to contact us. Sincerely, Richard K Nongard, LMFT/CCH 3 Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy: An Overview Cognitive-behavioral coping skills treatment (CBT) is a short-term, focused approach to helping individuals become abstinent from cocaine and other substances. (In this manual, the term cocaine abuser or cocaine-dependent individual is used to refer to individuals who meet DSM-IV criteria for cocaine abuse or dependence.) The underlying assumption is that learning processes play an important role in the development and continuation of cocaine abuse and dependence.<br><br> These same learning processes can be used to help individuals reduce their drug use. Very simply put, CBT attempts to help patients recognize, avoid, and cope. That is, RECOGNIZE the situations in which they are most likely to use cocaine, AVOID these situations when appropriate, and COPE more effectively with a range of problems and problematic behaviors associated with substance abuse.<br><br> Why CBT? Several important features of CBT make it particularly promising as a treatment for cocaine abuse and dependence: " CBT is a short-term, comparatively brief approach well suited to the resource capabilities of most clinical programs. " CBT has been extensively evaluated in rigorous clinical trials and has solid empirical support as treatment for cocaine abuse.<br><br> In particular, evidence points to the durability of CBT's effects as well as its effectiveness with subgroups of more severely dependent cocaine abusers. " CBT is structured, goal-oriented, and focused on the immediate problems faced by cocaine abusers entering treatment who are struggling to control their cocaine use. " CBT is a flexible, individualized approach that can be adapted to a wide range of patients as well as a variety of settings (inpatient, outpatient) and formats (group, individual).<br><br> " CBT is compatible with a range of other treatments the patient may receive, such as pharmacotherapy. " CBT's broad approach encompasses several important common tasks of successful substance abuse treatment. Components of CBT CBT has two critical components: " Functional analysis " Skills training 4 Functional Analysis For each instance of cocaine use during treatment, the therapist and patient do a functional analysis; that is, they identify the patient's thoughts, feelings, and circumstances before and after the cocaine use.<br><br> Early in treatment, the functional analysis plays a critical role in helping the patient and therapist assess the determinants, or high-risk situations, that are likely to lead to cocaine use and provides insights into some of the reasons the individual may be using cocaine (e.g., to cope with interpersonal difficulties, to experience risk or euphoria not otherwise available in the patient's life). Later in treatment, functional analyses of episodes of cocaine use may identify those situations or states in which the individual still has difficulty coping. Skills Training CBT can be thought of as a highly individualized training program that helps cocaine abusers unlearn old habits associated with cocaine abuse and learn or relearn healthier skills and habits.<br><br> By the time the level of substance use is severe enough to warrant treatment, patients are likely to be using cocaine as their single means of coping with a wide range of interpersonal and intrapersonal problems. This may occur for several reasons: " The individual may have never learned effective strategies to cope with the challenges and problems of adult life, as when substance use begins during early adolescence. " Although the individual may have acquired effective strategies at one time, these skills may have decayed through repeated reliance on substance use as a primary means of coping.<br><br> These patients have essentially forgotten effective strategies because of chronic involvement in a drug-using lifestyle in which the bulk of their time is spent in acquiring, using, and then recovering from the effects of drugs. " The individual's ability to use effective coping strategies may be weakened by other problems, such as cocaine abuse with concurrent psychiatric disorders. Because cocaine abusers are a heterogeneous group and typically come to treatment with a wide range of problems, skills training in CBT is made as broad as possible.<br><br> The first few sessions focus on skills related to initial control of cocaine use (e.g., identification of high-risk situations, coping with thoughts about cocaine use). Once these basic skills are mastered, training is broadened to include a range of other problems with which the individual may have difficulty coping (e.g., social isolation, unemployment). In addition, to strengthen and broaden the individual's range of coping styles, skills training focuses on both intrapersonal (e.g., coping with craving) and interpersonal (e.g., refusing offers of cocaine) skills.<br><br> Patients are taught these skills as both specific strategies (applicable in the here and now to control cocaine use) and general strategies that can be applied to a variety of other problems. Thus, CBT is not only geared to helping each patient reduce and eliminate substance use while in treatment, but also to imparting skills that can benefit the patient long after treatment. 5 Critical Tasks CBT addresses several critical tasks that are essential to successful substance abuse treatment (Rounsaville and Carroll 1992).<br><br> " Foster the motivation for abstinence . An important technique used to enhance the patient's motivation to stop cocaine use is to do a decisional analysis which clarifies what the individual stands to lose or gain by continued cocaine use. " Teach coping skills .<br><br> This is the core of CBT - to help patients recognize the high-risk situations in which they are most likely to use substances and to develop other, more effective means of coping with them. " Change reinforcement contingencies . By the time treatment is sought, many patients spend most of their time acquiring, using, and recovering from cocaine use to the exclusion of other experiences and rewards.<br><br> In CBT, the focus is on identifying and reducing habits associated with a drug-using lifestyle by substituting more enduring, positive activities and rewards. " Foster management of painful affects . Skills training also focuses on techniques to recognize and cope with urges to use cocaine; this is an excellent model for helping patients learn to tolerate other strong affects such as depression and anger.<br><br> " Improve interpersonal functioning and enhance social supports . CBT includes training in a number of important interpersonal skills and strategies to help patients expand their social support networks and build enduring, drug-free relationships. Parameters of CBT Format An individual format is preferred for CBT because it allows for better tailoring of treatment to meet the needs of specific patients.<br><br> Patients receive more attention and are generally more involved in treatment when they have the opportunity to work with and build a relationship with a single therapist over time. Individual treatment affords greater flexibility in scheduling sessions and eliminates the problem of either having to deliver treatment in a "rolling admissions" format or asking patients to wait several weeks until sufficient numbers of patients are recruited to form a group. Also, the comparatively high rates of retention in programs and studies may reflect, in part, particular advantages of individual treatment.<br><br> However, a number of researchers and clinicians have emphasized the unique benefits of delivering treatment to substance users in the group format (e.g., universality, peer pressure). It is relatively straightforward to adapt the treatment described in this manual for groups. This generally requires lengthening the sessions to 90 minutes to allow all group members to have an opportunity to comment on their personal experiences in trying out skills, give examples and participate in role-playing.<br><br> Treatment will also be more structured in a group format because of the need to present the key ideas and skills in a more didactic, less individualized format. 6 Length CBT has been offered in 12 to 16 sessions, usually over 12 weeks. This comparatively brief, short-term treatment is intended to produce initial abstinence and stabilization.<br><br> In many cases, this is sufficient to bring about sustained improvement for as long as a year after treatment ends. Preliminary data suggest that patients who are able to attain 3 or more weeks of continuous abstinence from cocaine during the 12-week treatment period are generally able to maintain good outcome during the 12 months after treatment ends. For many patients, however, brief treatment is not sufficient to produce stabilization or lasting improvement.<br><br> In these cases, CBT is seen as preparation for longer term treatment. Further treatment is recommended directly when the patient requests it or when the patient has not been able to achieve 3 or more weeks of continuous abstinence during the initial treatment. We are currently evaluating whether additional booster sessions of CBT during the 6 months following the initial treatment phase improves outcome.<br><br> The maintenance version of CBT focuses on the following: " Identifying situations, affects, and cognitions that remain problematic for patients in their efforts to maintain abstinence or which emerge after cessation or reduction of cocaine use. " Maintaining gains through solidifying the more effective coping skills and strategies the subject has implemented. " Encouraging patient involvement in activities and relationships that are incompatible with drug use.<br><br> Rather than introducing new material or skills, the maintenance version of CBT focuses on broadening and mastering the skills to which the patient was exposed during the initial phase of treatment. Setting Treatment is usually delivered on an outpatient basis for several reasons: " CBT focuses on understanding the determinants of substance use, and this is best done in the context of the patient's day-to-day life. By understanding who the patients are, where they live, and how they spend their time, therapists can develop more elaborate functional analyses.<br><br> " Skills training is most effective when patients have an opportunity to practice new skills and approaches within the context of their daily routine, learn what does and does not work for them, and discuss new strategies with the therapist. Patients CBT has been evaluated with a broad range of cocaine abusers. The following are generally not appropriate for CBT delivered on an out-patient basis: " Those who have psychotic or bipolar disorders and are not stabilized on medication " Those who have no stable living arrangements " Those who are not medically stable (as assessed by a pretreatment physical examination) 7 " Those who have other concurrent substance dependence disorders, with the exception of alcohol or marijuana dependence (although we assess the need for alcohol detoxification in the former) No significant differences have been found in outcome or retention for patients who seek treatment because of court or probation pressure and those who have DSM-IV diagnoses of antisocial personality disorder or other Axis II disorders, nor has outcome varied by patient race/ethnicity or gender.<br><br> Compatibility With Adjunctive Treatments CBT is highly compatible with a variety of other treatments designed to address a range of comorbid problems and severities of cocaine abuse: Pharmacotherapy for cocaine use and/or concurrent psychiatric disorders Self-help groups such as Cocaine Anonymous (CA) and Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) Family and couples therapy Vocational counseling, parenting skills, and so on when CBT is provided as part of a larger treatment package, it is essential for the CBT therapist to maintain close and regular contact with other treatment providers. Active Ingredients of CBT All behavioral or psychosocial treatments include both common and unique factors or "active ingredients." Common factors are those dimensions of treatment that are found in most psychotherapies - the provision of education, a convincing rationale for the treatment, enhancing expectations of improvement, provision of support and encouragement, and, in particular, the quality of the therapeutic relationship (Rozenzweig 1936; Castonguay 1993). Unique factors are those techniques and interventions that distinguish or characterize a particular psychotherapy.<br><br> CBT, like most therapies, consists of a complex combination of common and unique factors. For example, in CBT mere delivery of skills training without grounding in a positive therapeutic relationship leads to a dry, overly didactic approach that alienates or bores most patients and ultimately has the opposite effect of that intended. It is important to recognize that CBT is thought to exert its effects through this intricate interplay of common and unique factors.<br><br> A major task of the therapist is to achieve an appropriate balance between attending to the relationship and delivering skills training. For example, without a solid therapeutic alliance, it is unlikely that a patient will stay in treatment, be sufficiently engaged to learn new skills, or share successes and failures in trying new approaches to old problems. Conversely, empathic delivery of skills training as tools to help patients manage their lives more effectively may form the basis of a strong working alliance.<br><br> 8 Essential and Unique Interventions The key active ingredients that distinguish CBT from other therapies and that must be delivered for adequate exposure to CBT include the following: " Functional analyses of substance abuse " Individualized training in recognizing and coping with craving, managing thoughts about substance use, problem-solving, planning for emergencies, recognizing seemingly irrelevant decisions, and refusal skills " Examination of the patient's cognitive processes related to substance use " Identification and debriefing of past and future high-risk situations " Encouragement and review of extra-session implementation of skills " Practice of skills within sessions Recommended But Not Unique Interventions Interventions or strategies that should be delivered, as appropriate, during the course of each patient's treatment but that are not necessarily unique to CBT include those listed below. " Discussing, reviewing, and reformulating the patient's goals for treatment " Monitoring cocaine abuse and craving " Monitoring other substance abuse " Monitoring general functioning " Exploring positive and negative consequences of cocaine abuse " Exploring the relationship between affect and substance abuse " Providing feedback on urinalysis results " Setting the agenda for the session " Making process comments as indicated " Discussing advantages of an abstinence goal " Exploring the patient's ambivalence about abstinence " Meeting resistance with exploration and a problemsolving approach " Supporting patient efforts " Assessing level of family support " Explaining the distinction between a slip and a relapse " Including family members or significant others in up to two sessions Acceptable Interventions Four interventions are not required or strongly recommended as part of CBT but are not incompatible with this approach: " Exploring self-help involvement as a coping skill " Identifying means of self-reinforcement for abstinence " Exploring discrepancies between a patient's stated goals and actions 9 " Eliciting concerns about substance abuse and consequences Interventions Not Part of CBT Interventions that are distinctive of dissimilar approaches to treatment and less consistent with a cognitive-behavioral approach include those listed below. " Extensive self-disclosure by the therapist " Use of a confrontational style or a confrontation-of-denial approach " Requiring the patient to attend self-help groups " Extended discussion of 12-step recovery, higher power, "Big Book" philosophy " Use of disease model language or slogans " Extensive exploration of interpersonal aspects of substance abuse " Extensive discussion or interpretation of underlying conflicts or motives " Provision of direct reinforcement for abstinence (e.g., vouchers, tokens) " Interventions associated with Gestalt therapy, structural interventions, rational- emotive therapy, or other prescriptive treatment techniques CBT Compared to Other Treatments It is often easier to understand a treatment in terms of what it is not.<br><br> This section discusses CBT for cocaine abuse in terms of its similarities to and differences from other psychosocial treatments for substance abuse. Similar Approaches CBT is most similar to other cognitive and behavioral therapies, all of which understand substance abuse in terms of its antecedents and consequences. These include Beck's Cognitive Therapy (Beck et al.<br><br> 1991) and the Community Reinforcement Approach (CRA) (Azrin 1976; Meyers and Smith 1995), and particularly, Marlatt's Relapse Prevention (Marlatt and Gordon 1985), from which it was adapted. Cognitive Therapy Cognitive therapy "is a system of psychotherapy that attempts to reduce excessive emotional reactions and self-defeating behavior by modifying the faulty or erroneous thinking and maladaptive beliefs that underlie these reactions" (Beck et al. 1991, p.<br><br> 10). CBT is particularly similar to cognitive therapy in its emphasis on functional analysis of substance abuse and identifying cognitions associated with substance abuse. It differs from cognitive therapy primarily in terms of emphasis on identifying, understanding, and changing underlying beliefs about the self and the self in relationship to substance abuse as a primary focus of treatment.<br><br> Rather, in the initial sessions of CBT, the focus is on learning and practicing a variety of coping skills, only some of which are cognitive. 10 In CBT, initial strategies stress behavioral aspects of coping (e.g., avoiding or leaving the situation, distraction, and so on) rather than "thinking" one's way out of a situation. In cognitive therapy, the therapist's approach to focusing on cognitions is Socratic and based on leading the patient through a series of questions; in CBT, the approach is somewhat more didactic.<br><br> In cognitive therapy, the treatment is thought to reduce substance use by changing the way the patient thinks; in CBT, the treatment is thought to work by changing what the patient does and thinks. Community Reinforcement Approach The Community Reinforcement Approach (CRA) "is a broad-spectrum behavioral treatment approach for substance abuse problems...that utilizes social, recreational, familial, and vocational reinforcers to aid clients in the recovery process" (Meyers and Smith 1995, p. 1).<br><br> This approach uses a variety of reinforcers, often available in the community, to help substance users move into a drug-free lifestyle. Typical components of CRA treatment include (1) functional analysis of substance use, (2) social and recreational counseling, (3) employment counseling, (4) drug refusal training, (5) relaxation training, (6) behavioral skills training, and (7) reciprocal relationship counseling. In the very successful approach developed by Higgins and colleagues for cocaine- dependent individuals (Higgins et al.<br><br> 1991, 1994), a contingency management component is added that provides vouchers for staying in treatment. The vouchers are redeemable for items consistent with a drug-free lifestyle and are contingent upon the patient's provision of drug-free urine toxicology specimens. Thus, CRA and CBT share a number of common features, most importantly, the functional analysis of substance abuse and behavioral skills training.<br><br> CBT differs from CRA in not typically including the direct provision of either contingency management (vouchers) for abstinence or intervening with patients outside of treatment sessions or the treatment clinic, as do community-based interventions (job or social clubs). Motivational Enhancement Therapy CBT has some similarities to Motivational Enhancement Therapy (MET) (Miller and Rollnick 1992). MET "is based on principles of motivational psychology and is designed to produce rapid, internally motivated change.<br><br> This treatment strategy does not attempt to guide and train the client, step by step, through recovery, but instead employs motivational strategies to mobilize the client's own change resources" (Miller et al. 1992, p. 1).<br><br> CBT and MET share an exploration, early in the treatment process, of what patients stand to gain or lose through continued substance use as a strategy to build patients' motivation to change their substance abuse. CBT and MET differ primarily in emphasis on skill training. In MET, responsibility for how patients are to go about changing their behavior is left to the patients; it is assumed that patients can use available resources to change behavior and training is not required.<br><br> CBT theory maintains that learning and practice of specific substance-related coping skills foster abstinence. Thus, because they focus on different aspects of the change process 11 (MET on why patients may go about changing their substance use, CBT on how patients might do so), these two approaches may be seen as complementary. For example, for a patient with low motivation and few resources, an initial focus on motivational strategies before turning to specific coping skills (MET before CBT) may be the most productive approach.<br><br> Dissimilar Approaches While it is important to recognize that all psychosocial treatments for drug abuse share a number of features and may overlap or closely resemble one another in several ways, some approaches differ significantly from CBT. Twelve-Step Facilitation CBT is dissimilar to 12-step, or disease-model approaches, in a number of ways. Twelve- Step Facilitation (TSF) (Nowinski et al.<br><br> 1994) "is grounded in the concept of alcoholism as a spiritual and medical disease. The content of this intervention is consistent with the 12 Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA), with primary emphasis given to Steps 1 through 5. In addition to abstinence from all psychoactive substances, a major goal of the treatment is to foster the participant's commitment to and participation in AA or Cocaine Anonymous (CA).<br><br> Participants are actively encouraged to attend self-help meetings and to maintain journals of their AA/CA attendance and participation" (Project MATCH Research Group 1993). While CBT and TSF share some concepts - for example, the similarity between the disease model's "people, places, and things" and CBT's "high-risk situations" - there are a number of important differences. The disease-model approaches are grounded in a concept of addiction as a disease that can be controlled but never cured.<br><br> In CBT, substance abuse is a learned behavior that can be modified. The emphasis in disease model approaches is on patients' loss of control over substance abuse and other aspects of their lives; the emphasis in CBT is on self-control strategies, that is, what patients can do to recognize the processes and habits that underlie and maintain substance use and what can be done to change them. Similarly, the major change agent in disease-model approaches is involvement with the fellowship of AA/CA and working the 12 Steps, that is, the way to cope with nearly all drug-related problems is by going to meetings or deepening involvement with fellowship activities.<br><br> In CBT, coping strategies are much more individualized and based on the specific types of problems encountered by patients and their usual coping style. While attending AA or CA meetings is not required or strongly encouraged in CBT, some patients find attending meetings very helpful in their efforts to become or remain abstinent. CBT therapists take a neutral stance to attending AA; they encourage patients to view going to meetings as a, not the coping strategy.<br><br> The CBT therapist may explore with the patient the ways in which going to a meeting when faced with strong urges to use may be a very useful and important strategy to cope with craving; however, therapists will also encourage patients to think about and have ready a range of other strategies as well. 12 Interpersonal Psychotherapy CBT is also different from interpersonal and short-term dynamic approaches such as Interpersonal Psychotherapy (IPT) (Rounsaville and Carroll 1993) or Supportive- Expressive Therapy (SE) (Luborsky 1984). IPT "is based on the concept that many psychiatric disorders, including cocaine dependence, are intimately related to disorders in interpersonal functioning which may be associated with the genesis or perpetuation of the disorder.<br><br> IPT, as adapted for cocaine dependence, has four definitive characteristics: (1) adherence to a medical model of psychiatric disorders, (2) focus on patients' difficulties in current interpersonal functioning, (3) brevity and consistency of focus, and (4) use of an exploratory stance by the therapist that is similar to that of supportive and expressive therapies." IPT differs from CBT in several ways: CBT has a structured approach, whereas IPT is more exploratory. Extensive efforts are made in CBT to teach and encourage patients to use skills to control their substance abuse, while in the more exploratory IPT approaches, substance abuse is viewed as a symptom of other difficulties and conflicts and thus may deal less directly with the substance use. Basic Principles of CBT CBT is collaborative.<br><br> The patient and therapist consider and decide together on the appropriate treatment goals, the type and timing of skills training, whether a significant other is brought into some of the sessions, the nature of outside practice tasks, and so on. Not only does this foster the development of a good working relationship and avoid an overly passive stance by the therapist, but it also assures that treatment will be most useful and relevant to the patient. Learned Behavior CBT is based on social learning theory.<br><br> It is assumed that an important factor in how individuals begin to use and abuse substances is that they learn to do so. The several ways individuals may learn to use drugs include modeling, operant conditioning, and classical conditioning. Modeling People learn new skills by watching others and then trying it themselves.<br><br> For example, children learn language by listening to and copying their parents. The same may be true for many substance abusers. By seeing their parents use alcohol, individuals may learn to cope with problems by drinking.<br><br> Teenagers often begin smoking after watching their friends use cigarettes. So, too, may some cocaine abusers begin to use after watching their friends or family members use cocaine or other drugs. Operant Conditioning 13 Laboratory animals will work to obtain the same substances that many humans abuse (cocaine, opiates, and alcohol) because they find exposure to the substance pleasurable, that is, reinforcing.<br><br> Drug use can also be seen as behavior that is reinforced by its consequences. Cocaine may be used because it changes the way a person feels (e.g., powerful, energetic, euphoric, stimulated, less depressed), thinks (I can do anything, I can only get through this if I am high), or behaves (less inhibited, more confident). The perceived positive (and negative) consequences of cocaine use vary widely from individual to individual.<br><br> People with family histories of substance abuse, a high need for sensation seeking, or those with a concurrent psychiatric disorder may find cocaine particularly reinforcing. It is important that clinicians understand that any given individual uses cocaine for important and particular reasons. Classical Conditioning Pavlov demonstrated that, over time, repeated pairings of one stimulus (e.g., a bell ringing) with another (e.g., the presentation of food) could elicit a reliable response (e.g., a dog salivating).<br><br> Over time, cocaine abuse may become paired with money or cocaine paraphernalia, particular places (bars, places to buy drugs), particular people (drug-using associates, dealers), times of day or week (after work, weekends), feeling states (lonely, bored), and so on. Eventually, exposure to those cues alone is sufficient to elicit very intense cravings or urges that are often followed by cocaine abuse. Functional Analysis The first step in CBT is helping patients recognize why they are using cocaine and determining what they need to do to either avoid or cope with whatever triggers their use.<br><br> This requires a careful analysis of the circumstances of each episode and the skills and resources available to patients. These issues can often be assessed in the first few sessions through an open-ended exploration of the patients' substance abuse history, their view of what brought them to treatment, and their goals for treatment. Therapists should try to learn the answers to the following questions.<br><br> Deficiencies and Obstacles " Have the patients been able to recognize the need to reduce availability of cocaine? " Have they been able to recognize important cocaine cues? " Have they been able to achieve even brief periods of abstinence?<br><br> " Have they recognized events that have led to relapse? " Have the patients been able to tolerate periods of cocaine craving or emotional distress without resorting to drug use? " Do they recognize the relationship of their other substance abuse (especially alcohol) in maintaining cocaine dependence?<br><br> " Do the patients have concurrent psychiatric disorders or other problems that might confound efforts to change behavior? Skills and Strengths 14 " What skills or strengths have they demonstrated during any previous periods of abstinence? " Have they been able to maintain a job or positive relationships while abusing drugs?<br><br> " Are there people in the patients' social network who do not use or supply drugs? " Are there social supports and resources to bolster the patients' efforts to become abstinent? " How do the patients spend time when not using drugs or recovering from their effects?<br><br> " What was their highest level of functioning before using drugs? " What brought them to treatment now? " How motivated are the patients?<br><br> Determinants of Cocaine Use " What is their individual pattern of use (weekends only, every day, binge use)? " What triggers their cocaine use? " Do they use cocaine alone or with other people?<br><br> " Where do they buy and use cocaine? " Where and how do they acquire the money to buy drugs? " What has happened to (or within) the patients before the most recent episodes of abuse?<br><br> " What circumstances were at play when cocaine abuse began or became problematic? " How do they describe cocaine and its effects on them? " What are the roles, both positive and negative, that cocaine plays in their lives?<br><br> Relevant Domains In identifying patients' determinants of drug abuse, it may be helpful for clinicians to focus their inquiries to cover at least five general domains: " Social : With whom do they spend most of their time? With whom do they use drugs? Do they have relationships with those individuals that do not involve substance abuse?<br><br> Do they live with someone who is a substance abuser? How has their social network changed since drug abuse began or escalated? " Environmental : What are the particular environmental cues for their drug abuse (e.g., money, alcohol use, particular times of the day, certain neighborhoods)?<br><br> What is the level of their day-to-day exposure to these cues? Can some of these cues be easily avoided? " Emotional : Research has shown that feeling states commonly precede substance abuse or craving.<br><br> These include both negative (depression, anxiety, boredom, anger) and positive (excitement, joy) affect states. Because many patients initially have difficulty linking particular emotional states to their substance abuse 15 (or do so, but only at a surface level), affective antecedents of substance abuse typically are more difficult to identify in the initial stages of treatment. " Cognitive : Particular sets of thought or cognition frequently precede cocaine use (I need to escape; I can't deal with this unless I'm high; With what I am going through I deserve to get high).<br><br> These thoughts are often charged and have a sense of urgency. " Physical : Desire for relief from uncomfortable physical states such as withdrawal has been implicated as a frequent antecedent of drug abuse. While controversy surrounding the nature of physical withdrawal symptoms from cocaine dependence continues, anecdotally, cocaine abusers frequently report particular physical sensations as precursors to substance abuse (e.g., tingling in their stomachs, fatigue or difficulty concentrating, thinking they smell cocaine).<br><br> Assessment Tools Standardized instruments may also be useful in rounding out the therapist's understanding of the patient and identifying treatment goals. The following assessment tools have been helpful. " Substance abuse and related problems o The Addiction Severity Index (McLellan et al.<br><br> 1992) assesses the frequency and severity of substance abuse as well as the type and severity of psychosocial problems that typically accompany substance abuse (e.g., medical, legal, family/ social, employment, psychiatric). o The Change Assessment Scale (DiClemente and Hughes 1990) assesses the patient's current position on readiness for change (e.g., precontemplation, contemplation, commitment), which may be an important predictor of response to substance abuse treatment (Prochaska et al. 1992).<br><br> o A record of daily substance use can be used to collect information on cocaine and other substance use day by day over a significant period. o The Treatment Attitudes and Expectation form, a self-report instrument, has been adapted from the National Institute of Mental Health Treatment of Depression Collaborative Research Program (Elkin et al. 1985) and modified for use with cocaine abusers.<br><br> Greater congruence between patients' expectations of treatment and beliefs about the causes of substance use and those of the treatment they receive may result in improved outcome, as compared to persons whose treatment expectations contrast with the treatment received (Hall et al. 1991). " Psychiatric diagnosis and symptoms o The Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV (SCID) and SCID-P (First et al.<br><br> 1995) provides DSM-IV diagnoses (for Axis I and II psychiatric diagnoses). It can also be used to assess severity of cocaine dependence by the total number of dependence syndrome elements endorsed (from the DSM-III-R substance abuse criteria). 16 o The California Psychological Inventory Socialization Scale (CPI- So) has been found to be a valid continuous measure of sociopathy in alcoholics (Cooney et al.<br><br> 1990) and an important variable for patient-treatment matching in alcoholics (Kadden et al. 1989). o The self-report Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) (Beck et al.<br><br> 1961) and a clinician-rated instrument, the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (Hamilton 1960), assess depression. The Symptom Checklist (SCL-90) (Derogatis et al. 1973) assesses a broader range of symptoms.<br><br> " Baseline level of coping skills and self-efficacy o The Cocaine Use Situations Inventory monitors changes in patients' self-efficacy and expectations of abstinence. This self-report form lists approximately 30 different types of high-risk situations and helps clinicians pinpoint specific situations that the patient does not cope with effectively. This instrument was derived from the self-efficacy instrument developed by Condiotte and Lichtenstein (1981) for use with alcoholics.<br><br> Skills Training Learning serves as an important metaphor for the treatment process throughout CBT. Therapists tell patients that a goal of the treatment is to help them "unlearn" old, ineffective behaviors and "learn" new ones. Patients, particularly those who are demoralized by their failure to cease their cocaine abuse, or for whom the consequences of cocaine abuse have been highly negative, are frequently surprised to consider cocaine abuse as a type of skill, as something they have learned to do over time.<br><br> After all, they are surprised when they think of themselves as having learned a complex set of skills that enabled them to acquire the money needed to buy cocaine (which often led to another set of licit or illicit skills), acquire cocaine without being arrested, use cocaine and avoid detection, and so on. Patients who can reframe their self-appraisals in terms of being skilled in this way often see that they also have the capacity to learn a new set of skills that will help them remain abstinent. Learning Strategies Aimed at Cessation of Cocaine Use In CBT, it is assumed that individuals essentially learn to become cocaine abusers through complex interplays of modeling, classical conditioning, or operant conditioning.<br><br> Each of these principles is used to help the patient stop abusing cocaine. Modeling is used to help the patient learn new behaviors by having the patient participate in role-plays with the therapist during treatment. The patient learns to respond in new, unfamiliar ways by first watching the therapist model those new strategies and then practicing those strategies within the supportive context of the therapy hour.<br><br> New behaviors may include how to refuse an offer of drugs or how to break off or limit a relationship with a drug-using associate. Operant conditioning concepts are used several ways in CBT. 17 " Through a detailed examination of the antecedents and consequences of substance abuse, therapists attempt to understand why patients may be more likely to use in a given situation and to understand the role that cocaine plays in their lives.<br><br> This functional analysis of substance abuse is used to identify the high-risk situations in which they are likely to abuse drugs and, thus, to provide the basis for learning more effective coping behaviors in those situations. " Therapists attempt to help patients develop meaningful alternative reinforcers to drug abuse, that is, other activities and involvements (relationships, work, hobbies) that serve as viable alternatives to cocaine abuse and help them remain abstinent. " A detailed examination of the consequences, both long- and short-term, of cocaine and other substance abuse is employed as a strategy to build or reinforce the patient's resolve to reduce or cease substance abuse.<br><br> Classical conditioning concepts also play an important role in CBT, particularly in interventions directed at reducing some forms of craving for cocaine. Just as Pavlov demonstrated that repeated pairings of a conditioned stimulus with an unconditioned stimulus could elicit a conditioned response, he also demonstrated that repeated exposure to the conditioned stimulus without the unconditioned stimulus would, over time, extinguish the conditioned response. Thus, the therapist attempts to help patients understand and recognize conditioned craving, identify their own idiosyncratic array of conditioned cues for craving, avoid exposure to those cues, and cope effectively with craving when it does occur so that conditioned craving is reduced.<br><br> Generalizable Skills Since CBT treatment is brief, only a few specific skills can be introduced to most patients. Typically, these are skills designed to help the patient gain initial control over cocaine and other substance abuse, such as coping with craving and managing thoughts about drug abuse. However, the therapist should make it clear to the patient that any of these skills can be applied to a variety of problems, not just cocaine abuse.<br><br> The therapist should explain that CBT is an approach that seeks to teach skills and strategies that the patient can use long after treatment. For example, the skills involved in coping with craving (recognizing and avoiding cues, modifying behavior through urge- control techniques, and so on) can be used to deal with a variety of strong emotional states that may also be related to cocaine abuse. Similarly, the session on problem- solving skills can be applied to nearly any problem the patient faces, whether drug abuse- related or not.<br><br> Match Material to Patient Needs CBT is highly individualized. Rather than viewing treatment as cookbook psychoeducation, the therapist should carefully match the content, timing , and nature of presentation of the material to the patient. The therapist attempts to provide skills training at the moment the patient is most in need of the skill.<br><br> The therapist does not belabor topics, such as breaking ties with cocaine suppliers, with a patient who is highly motivated and has been abstinent for several weeks. Similarly, the therapist does not rush through material in an 18 attempt to cover all of it in a few weeks; for some patients, it may take several weeks to truly master a basic skill. It is more effective to slow down and work at a pace that is comfortable and productive for a particular individual than to risk the therapeutic alliance by using a pace that is too aggressive.<br><br> Similarly, therapists should be careful to use language that is compatible with the patient's level of understanding and sophistication. For example, while some patients can readily understand concepts of conditioned craving in terms of Pavlov's experiments on classical conditioning, others require simpler, more concrete examples, using familiar language and terms. Therapists should frequently check with patients to be sure they understand a concept and that the material feels relevant to them.<br><br> The therapist should also be alert to signals from patients who think the material is not well suited to them. These signals include loss of eye contact and other forms of drifting away, overly brief responses, failure to come up with examples, failure to do homework, and so on. An important strategy in matching material to patient needs (and providing treatment that is patient driven rather than manual driven) is to use, whenever possible, specific examples provided by the patients, either through their history or relating events of the week.<br><br> For example, rather than focusing on an abstract recitation of "Seemingly Irrelevant Decisions," the therapist should emphasize a recent, specific example of a decision made by the patient that ended in an episode of cocaine use or craving. Similarly, to make sure the patient understands a concept, the therapist should ask the patient to think of a specific experience or example that occurred in the past week that illustrates the concept or idea. "It sounds like you had a lot of difficulty this week and wound up in some risky situations without quite knowing how you got there.<br><br> That's exactly what I'd like to talk about this week, how by not paying attention to the little decisions we make all the time, we can land in some rough spots. Now, you started out talking about how you had nothing to do on Saturday and decided to hang out in the park, and 2 hours later you were driving into the city to score with Teddy. If we look carefully at what happened Saturday, I bet we can come up with a whole chain of decisions you made that seemed pretty innocent at the time, but eventually led to you being in the city.<br><br> For example, how did it happen that you felt you had nothing to do on Saturday?" Use Repetition Learning new skills and effective skill-building requires time and repetition. By the time they seek treatment, cocaine users' habits related to their drug abuse tend to be deeply ingrained. Any given patient's routine around acquiring, using, and recovering from cocaine use is well established and tends to feel comfortable to the patient, despite the negative consequences of cocaine abuse.<br><br> It is important that therapists recognize how difficult, uncomfortable, and even threatening it is to change these established habits and try new behaviors. For most patients, mastering a new approach to old situations takes several attempts. Moreover, many patients come to treatment only after long periods of chronic use, which may affect their attention, concentration, and memory and thus their ability to comprehend new material.<br><br> Others seek treatment at a point of extreme crisis (e.g., 19 learning they are HIV positive, after losing a job); these patients may be so preoccupied with their current problems that they find it difficult to focus on the therapist's thoughts and suggestions. Thus, in the early weeks of treatment, repetition is often necessary if a patient is to be able to understand or retain a concept or idea. In fact, the basic concepts of this treatment are repeated throughout the CBT process.<br><br> For example, the idea of a functional analysis of cocaine abuse occurs formally in the first session as part of the rationale for treatment, when the therapist describes understanding cocaine abuse in terms of antecedents and consequences. Next, patients are asked to practice conducting a functional analysis as part of the homework assignment for the first session. The concept of a functional analysis then recurs in each session; the therapist starts out by asking about any episodes of cocaine use or craving, what preceded the episodes, and how the patient coped.<br><br> The idea of cocaine use in the context of its antecedents and consequences is inherent in most treatment sessions. For example, craving and thoughts about cocaine are common antecedents of cocaine abuse and are the focus of two early sessions. These sessions encourage patients to identify their own obvious and more subtle determinants of cocaine abuse, with a slightly different focus each time.<br><br> Similarly, each session ends with a review of the possible pitfalls and high-risk situations that may occur before the next session, to again stimulate patients to become aware of and change their habits related to cocaine abuse. While key concepts are repeated throughout the manual, therapists should recognize that repetition of whole sessions, or parts of sessions, may be necessary for patients who do not readily grasp these concepts because of cognitive impairment or other problems. Therapists should feel free to repeat session material as many times and in as many different ways as needed with particular patients.<br><br> Practice Mastering Skills We do not master complex new skills by merely reading about them or watching others do them. We learn by trying out new skills ourselves, making mistakes, identifying those mistakes, and trying again. In CBT, practice of new skills is a central, essential component of treatment.<br><br> The degree to which the treatment is skills training over merely skills exposure has to do with the amount of practice. It is critical that patients have the opportunity to try out new skills within the supportive context of treatment. Through firsthand experience, patients can learn what new approaches work or do not work for them, where they have difficulty or problems, and so on.<br><br> CBT offers many opportunities for practice, both within sessions and outside of them. Each session includes opportunities for patients to rehearse and review ideas, raise concerns, and get feedback from the therapist. Practice exercises are suggested for each session; these are basically homework assignments that provide a structured way of helping patients test unfamiliar behaviors or try familiar behaviors in new situations.<br><br> However, practice is only useful if the patient sees its value and actually tries the exercise. Compliance with extra-session assignments is a problem for many patients. Several strategies are helpful in encouraging patients to do homework.<br><br> 20 Give a Clear Rationale Therapists should not expect a patient to practice a skill or do a homework assignment without understanding why it might be helpful. Thus, as part of the first session, therapists should stress the importance of extra-session practice. "It will be important for us to talk about and work on new coping skills in our sessions, but it is even more important to put these skills into use in your daily life.<br><br> You are really the expert on what works and doesn't work for you, and the best way to find out what works for you is to try it out. It's very important that you give yourself a chance to try out new skills outside our sessions so we can identify and discuss any problems you might have putting them into practice. We've found, too, that people who try to practice these things tend to do better in treatment.<br><br> The practice exercises I'll be giving you at the end of each session will help you try out these skills. We'll go over how well they worked for you, what you thought of the exercises, and what you learned about yourself and your coping style at the beginning of each session." Get a Commitment We are all much more likely to do things we have told other people we would do. Rather than assume that patients will follow through on a task, CBT therapists should be direct and ask patients whether they are willing to practice skills outside of sessions and whether they think it will be helpful to do so.<br><br> A clear "yes" conveys the message that the patient understands the importance of the task and its usefulness. Moreover, it sets up a discussion of discrepancy if the patient fails to follow through. On the other hand, hesitation or refusal may be a critical signal of clinical issues that are important to explore with the patient.<br><br> Patients may refuse to do homework because they do not see the value of the task, because they are ambivalent about treatment or renouncing cocaine abuse, because they do not understand the task, or for various other reasons. Anticipate Obstacles It is essential to leave enough time at the end of each session to develop or go over the upcoming week's practice exercise in detail. Patients should be given ample opportunity to ask questions and raise concerns about the task.<br><br> Therapists should ask patients to anticipate any difficulties they might have in carrying out the assignment and apply a problem-solving strategy to help work through these obstacles. Patients should be active participants in this process and have the opportunity to change or develop the task with the therapist, to plan how the skill will be put into practice, and so on. Working through obstacles may include a different approach to the task (e.g., using a tape recorder for self-monitoring instead of writing), thinking through when the task will be done, whether someone else will be asked to help, and so on.<br><br> The goal of this discussion should be the patient's expressed commitment to do the exercise. 21 Monitor Closely Following up on assignments is critical to improving compliance and enhancing the effectiveness of these tasks. Checking on task completion underscores the importance of practicing coping skills outside of sessions.<br><br> It also provides an opportunity to discuss the patient's experience with the tasks so that any problems can be addressed in treatment. In general, patients who do homework tend to have therapists who value homework, spend a lot of time talking about homework, and expect their patients to actually do the homework. The early part of each session must include at least 5 minutes for reviewing the practice exercise in detail; it should not be limited to asking patients whether they did it.<br><br> If patients expect the therapist to ask about the practice exercise, they are more likely to attempt it than are patients whose therapist does not follow through. Similarly, if any other task is discussed during a session (e.g., implementation of a specific plan to avoid a potential high-risk situation), be sure to bring it up in the following session. For example, "Were you able to talk to your brother about not coming over after he gets high?" Use the Data The work patients do in implementing a practice exercise and their thoughts about the task convey a wealth of important information about the patients, their coping style and resources, and their strengths and weaknesses.<br><br> It should be valued by the therapist and put to use during the sessions. A simple self-monitoring assignment, for example, can quickly reveal patients' understanding of the task or basic concepts of CBT, level of cognitive flexibility, insight into their own behavior, level of motivation, coping style, level of impulsivity, verbal skills, usual emotional state, and much more. Rather than simply checking homework, the CBT therapist should explore with the patients what they learned about themselves in carrying out the task.<br><br> This, along with the therapist's own observations, will help guide the topic selection and pacing of future sessions. Explore Resistance Some patients literally do the practice exercise in the waiting room before a session, while others do not even think about their practice exercises. Failure to implement coping skills outside of sessions may have a variety of meanings: patients feel hopeless and do not think it is worth trying to change behavior; they expect change to occur through willpower alone, without making specific changes in particular problem areas; the patients' life is chaotic and crisis ridden, and they are too disorganized to carry out the tasks; and so on.<br><br> By exploring the specific nature of patients' difficulty, therapists can help them work through it. Praise Approximations Just as most patients do not immediately become fully abstinent on treatment entry, many are not fully compliant with practice exercises. Therapists should try to shape the 22 patients' behavior by praising even small attempts at working on assignments, highlighting anything they reveal was helpful or interesting in carrying out the assignment, reiterating the importance of practice, and developing a plan for completion of the next session's homework assignment.<br><br> The Structure and Format of Sessions CBT is highly structured and is more didactic than many other treatments. Thus, CBT therapists assume a more directive and active stance than therapists conducting some other forms of substance abuse treatment. A great deal of work is done during each session, including reviewing practice exercises, debriefing problems that may have occurred since the last session, skills training, feedback on skills training, in-session practice, and planning for the next week.<br><br> This active stance must be balanced with adequate time for understanding and engaging with the patient. 20/20/20 Rule To achieve a good integration of manual-driven and patient-driven material in each session, we have developed the "20/20/20 Rule" for the flow of a typical 60-minute CBT session (exhibit 1) . During the first 20 minutes, therapists focus on getting a clear understanding of patients' current concerns, level of general functioning, and substance use and craving during the past week, as well as their experiences with the practice exercise.<br><br> This part of the session tends to be characterized by patients doing most of the talking, although therapists guide with questions and reflection as they get a sense of the patients' current status. The second 20 minutes is devoted to introduction and discussion of a particular skill. Therapists typically talk more than patients during this part of the session, although it is critical that therapists personalize the didactic material and check back with patients frequently for examples and understanding.<br><br> The final 20 minutes reverts to being more patient dominated, as patients and therapists agree on a practice exercise for the next week and anticipate and plan for any difficulties the patients might encounter before the next session. Exhibit 1: Session Flow in CBT, The 20/20/20 Rule First 20 minutes " Assess substance abuse, craving, and high-risk situations since last session. " Listen for/elicit patients' concerns " Review and discuss the practice exercise Second 20 minutes " Introduce and discuss the session topic " Relate the session topic to current concerns 23 Third 20 minutes " Explore the patient's understanding of and reactions to the topic.<br><br> " Assign a practice exercise for the next week " Review plans for the week and anticipate potential high-risk situations. First Third of Session Assess Patient Status Therapists greet the patients and typically start the session by asking them how they are doing. Most patients respond by spontaneously reporting whether they used cocaine or had cravings during the last week.<br><br> If patients do not report substance use, therapists should ask about this directly. Particularly in the beginning of treatment, therapists should obtain detailed, day-by-day descriptions of how much cocaine was used. For each episode of use, therapists should spend several minutes doing a functional analysis (what happened before the episode, when was the patient first aware of the desire or urge to use, what was the feeling, how and where did the patient acquire the cocaine, what was the high like, what happened afterward).<br><br> If patients report no cocaine use, therapists should probe for any high-risk situations or cravings they may have experienced and debrief these as well. The therapists' goal is to get a detailed sense of the patients' current level of functioning, motivation, and cocaine use. Urine Tests Objective feedback on patients' clinical status and progress through urine toxicology screens is an important part of this and any other drug treatment program.<br><br> Urine specimens should be collected by therapists at every clinical contact (and at least weekly). The early part of the session is a good opportunity to review the results of the most recent urine toxicology report with patients. Ideally, the clinic would have access to a dipstick method where urine can be tested on the spot, and drug abuse within the past 3 days can be detected.<br><br> While discussing urine test results is straightforward when patients report being drug-free and the laboratory results confirm this, it is somewhat more complicated when patients deny cocaine use but the urine screen is positive. While patients often present excuses or creative explanations for why the toxicology screen was in error, it is best to point out that laboratory errors are quite unusual, that patients have little to gain from not being honest about substance abuse, and in fact, have much to lose, since treatment will be less helpful if patients are not open about the kinds of problems they are having. Confronting patients about discrepancies in self versus laboratory reports of substance use is very important; done well, this can advance the therapeutic relationship and the process of treatment significantly.<br><br> However, pointing out these discrepancies should not be done in a confrontational style. Rather, therapists might point out discrepancies between the patients' stated treatment goals and the urine results ("You've said things are all going great, but the urine results make me wonder if it's all been as easy as you say. What do you make of this?").<br><br> Therapists might also point out some reasons why patients are often reluctant to admit to ongoing drug abuse (fear of being terminated from 24 treatment, wanting to please the therapist, testing the therapist), explore these with the patients, and process these as appropriate. "It sounds like you're afraid that treatment is not working for you as quickly as you, and especially your wife, would like, and admitting you used last week might mean you wouldn't continue in treatment. I want you to understand that as long as you keep coming, working hard, and trying to stop use, I'll keep working with you.<br><br> The only way that would change is if your cocaine use increased to a level where it was clear that outpatient treatment just wasn't enough to help you stop. In that case, we'd talk about increasing the frequency of sessions or other options, like having you enter an inpatient unit. How does that sound?" * * * Therapist: "I know the cocaine level from last week's lab test wasn't high, but it does indicate some recent cocaine abuse.<br><br> Is it possible you used even a small amount last week?" Patient: "Well, I did use a dime, but I didn't think that counted." Therapist: "One line in the last week is a lot less than you were using just a few weeks ago and that's really great. But before we get into how you were able to cut down your use that much, I was wondering why you think that one line 'doesn't count,' since there's probably a lot we can learn about even that small amount of use." Problem-solving It is not unusual for patients, particularly those who have not been in treatment before, to come late to appointments or miss appointments without calling. In such cases, therapists may apply a problemsolving strategy.<br><br> This entails some inquiry about why the patient was late, brainstorming solutions to lateness, and working through how plans to attend sessions promptly might be implemented. Listen for Current Concerns In reporting on substance abuse and major life events since the last session, patients are likely to reveal a great deal about their general level of functioning and the types of issues and problems of most current concern. Therapists should listen carefully and assess patients in a number of domains.<br><br> " Has the patient made some progress in reducing drug abuse? " What is the patient's current level of motivation? " Is a reasonable level of support available in efforts to<br><br>