Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

The TS Clinic at Rutgers specializes in providing cognitive behavioral therapy, a structured, goal oriented approach focused on developing coping skills, and modifying problematic thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. CBT is applied to the treatment of many conditions including, but not limited to, tics, anxiety, OCD, ADHD, depression, challenging behaviors, body focused repetitive behaviors, and social skills development.

  • Individual and family based
  • For children, adolescents, and adults
  • Teaches and develops coping skills for
    • Feelings:Identifying feelings, triggers, managing physical symptoms
    • Thoughts:Identifying maladaptive thoughts, challenging and restructuring thoughts, increasing self awareness, using realistic/positive thinking, problem solving
    • Behaviors:Behavioral practice, gradual exposure to fears/challenging situations, being behaviorally active, functional behavioral intervention plans
  • Focused on decreasing problem behaviors, increasing helpful behaviors, and increasing confidence and competence
  • Utilizes a structured approach with between session practice and follow-up

Comprehensive Behavioral Intervention for Tics (CBIT)

Comprehensive Behavioral Intervention for Tics (CBIT) is a structured evidenced-based non-medical intervention for tics based on cognitive behavioral therapy. CBIT is for children, adolescents and adults. CBIT works on one tic at a time to help individuals learn tic management strategies through three main components:

  1. Increasing awareness of the tic and the urge to tic (awareness training)
  2. Using a competing behavioral response when the urge to tic is felt (competing response)
  3. Making adjustments to daily activities that help to reduce the tics

The goals of CBIT are:

  1. Reduce the symptoms of the tic and tic urge
  2. Develop tic management strategies
  3. Boost social confidence and self-efficacy

CBIT is a combination of “Habit Reversal Training” (HRT) and functional behavioral assessment/intervention (FBA/I). HRT involves awareness training and developing a competing response. Functional assessment/intervention involves first identifying situations that precede/trigger tics, and responses to the tics after they occur that can make them worse. Second, it involves using this information to develop strategies for modifying the environment to reduce tics.

More information on CBIT

Tourette Association of America pamphlet on CBIT

Scientific American article