What are the pros and cons of using a CBT treatment manual with adults? 

What are the pros and cons of using a CBT treatment manual with adults?


What are the pros and cons of using a CBT treatment manual with adults?


CBT is an established way of treating mental health disorders, but it’s also been used to help people with a variety of issues. The most popular CBT manual for adults is the University of Pennsylvania’s Individual CBT Treatment Manual (ICBM), which has been translated into many languages and can be found online here. It covers a range of common mental health concerns in detail, including depression, anxiety, and other mood disorders; addictive behaviors like substance abuse or gambling addiction; and eating disorders like anorexia nervosa or bulimia nervosa (and many more).


  • It helps to set clear expectations for the client, who may not always be able to verbalize their own thoughts and feelings.
  • It also helps to clarify the goals of treatment, which can be difficult for some patients.
  • The manual helps keep both therapist and patient on track by helping them identify what they need from each session, as well as how it fits into a larger plan for improvement.
  • The manual keeps therapists accountable for their work in therapy sessions because they are bound by a strict code of conduct that spells out what kind of behavior is acceptable during sessions (e.g., no interrupting or talking over others).


  • The manual may be too structured.
  • The manual may not be tailored to the individual.
  • It’s possible that the CBT treatment manual won’t be flexible enough to deal with complex issues or change in the client.

The short answer is that CBT treatment manuals can be helpful for adults, but there are caveats.

The short answer is that CBT treatment manuals can be helpful for adults, but there are caveats.

  • The majority of people who use CBT treatment manuals are older than 50 years old and have experienced some form of mental health disorder or addiction. This is because the manual was originally designed for children and adolescents with particular issues – such as depression or anxiety – not just anyone who wants to improve their life by changing their thoughts and behaviors. So if you don’t fit the profile, it may not be the best option for you at this time in your life stage (or maybe ever).
  • There may also be other options available where a therapist doesn’t require them to purchase anything special other than having open communication between themselves and their clients/patients while they work together toward mutually agreed upon goals; however we do not know enough about these methods yet so we cannot recommend them yet either!


When we talk about CBT treatment manuals for adults, it’s important to understand what the pros and cons of these manuals actually are. These manuals can be very helpful in treating mood disorders—but they also come with their own set of drawbacks that you should be aware of before you decide whether or not they would work for your particular situation. The good news is that there are many different types out there: some focus on cognitive behavioral therapy while others focus more heavily on non-cognitive elements such as mindfulness practices or interpersonal relationships with loved ones. If what’s really holding you back from getting better is stress related issues like anxiety or depression, then those symptoms may respond quite well to this type of treatment too!



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