chapter  17
14 Pages

Cognitive theory and therapy of bipolar disorders

WithJan Scott

Bipolar disorders were widely regarded as biological disorders best treated with medications. A. T. Beck's original cognitive theory suggests that depressed mood states are accentuated by patterns of thinking that amplify mood shifts. Cognitive vulnerability to depression is thought to arise as a consequence of dysfunctional underlying beliefs that develop from early learning experiences, and drive thinking and behaviour. J. Scott et al. explored several aspects of the cognitive model simultaneously, including dysfunctional attitudes, positive and negative self- esteem, autobiographical memory and problem-solving skills. It is increasingly recognized that the cognitive behavioural processes that may maintain psychological disorders are common to several disorders, and can be regarded as ''transdiagnostic''. The study of dysfunctional beliefs in bipolar disorder is beginning to provide important insights into the evolution of episodes. Clients were initially randomly allocated to the intervention group or to a "waiting list'' control group.