Sample Psychology Essays on Empirical Support for Treatment

Empirical Support for Treatment

Research-based evidence has played a vital role in developing standards of practice, effective diagnostic tools and protocols, disease treatment and management procedures, and development and fostering of effective and therapeutic relationships between healthcare practitioners and doctors. However, the use of empirical data to support treatment procedures is not confined to medical professionals. The need for informed consent by patients and collaborative decision making during treatment calls for patients to appraise themselves relevant information regarding their medical condition and treatment and management procedures.

Empirical Support for Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Counseling, like many other practices in the healthcare industry, are founded on evidence-based practices. Empirical data form the basis of diagnostic and treatment procedures used by counselors. One such treatment procedure used in counseling is cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT): a psychotherapy treatment initially developed to treat patients suffering from a wide range of eating disorders such as anorexia and bulimia. Due to its high levels of efficacy in modifying behaviors and emotions, CBT is currently used in treating individuals suffering from a wide array of mental disorders such as obsessive depression, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and anxiety among others.

A review of meta-analysis studies examining the efficacy of CBT in treating various mental conditions involving dysfunctional emotions and behaviors showed that the therapy was highly effective. The mental conditions studied include substance, insomnia, personality disorders, bipolar disorder, and chronic pain among others. In particular, the review which involved 106 studies as a representative sample established that CBT was highly effective in treating general stress, bulimia, anger, and somatoform and anxiety disorders. Out eleven studies reviewed for these conditions, seven showed high CBT efficacy levels. A low response was recorded in only one meta-analysis study involving CBT (Hofmann et al., 2012).

Other studies have also shown that CBT are also highly efficacious in treating chronic in adults and children. A study that reviewed several meta-analyses on CBT efficacy also show that therapists are increasingly incorporating innovations such as internet and telephone into CBT sessions to greater effect (Ehde, Dillworth & Turner, 2014).

Impact of Empirical Support on My Work

Cognitive behavioral therapy is a popular psychotherapy option for many of my clients. The empirical support has reinforced my belief in its efficacy when it comes to treating the various mental conditions that many of my clients suffer from. Finding empirical data to support CBT has instilled a greater sense of confidence on me to continue using it to help my clients recover from conditions and boost their happiness levels. Additionally, having research-based evidence to back up the use of CBT for a wide array of physical conditions, disorders and mental problems will help in enabling my patients and their families make informed choices.

Moreover, finding research-based evidence from over a hundred studies that primary supports the efficacy of CBT in treating physical and mental disorders has given me the drive to champion for its use by my colleagues within my workplace. The studies reviewed also showed exposed information gaps which provide research opportunities that I would like to explore in the future. This includes the effectiveness of CBT in treating other disorders and conditions not exhaustively explored in the studies.

In conclusion, supporting a medical practice or procedure with scientific evidence is a fundamental undertaking. It safeguards the safety of patients and medical practitioners, builds mutual trust between medical practitioners and doctors while also improving the quality of services and patients’ life. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) has gained popularity among therapists and patients due to its evidence-backed efficacy in treating various conditions.




Ehde, D. M., Dillworth, T. M. & Turner, J. A. (2014). Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy for Individuals with Chronic Pain: Efficacy, Innovations, and Directions for Research. American Psychological Association, 69(2), 153–166. DOI: 10.1037/a0035747

Hofmann, S. G. et al. (2012). The Efficacy of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: A Review of Meta-analyses. Cognit Ther Res., 36(5), 427–440. doi: 10.1007/s10608-012-9476-1