How Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Works for Anxiety

By Jared Levenson - Reviewed on April 12, 2023
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Anxiety is a common mental health issue that affects people of all ages. For many, the best way to manage their symptoms is through cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT).

CBT is one of the most effective treatments available for managing anxiety, and it has been used successfully in clinical settings for decades.

CBT can help you make sense of problems that seem too big to handle by breaking them down into smaller parts.

CBT divides problems into five main areas:

  1. Actions
  2. Feelings
  3. Ideas
  4. Physical Sensations
  5. Situations

CBT is based on the idea that these five areas are linked and affect each other. For example, what you think about a situation can often affect how you feel physically and emotionally and what you do in response.

In recent years, however, more and more people have been turning to online CBT services to help them manage their anxiety.

Our Online Mental Health Reviews team is your go-to source for information about Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Anxiety.

We provide reliable sources with links, draw from our extensive mental health experience, try services firsthand, and record our experiences with mental health products to provide the best advice possible.

Let’s take a closer look at this treatment option and see how it can help you cope with your anxiety. 

What Is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)? 

Cognitive behavioral therapy is an evidence-based psychotherapy that focuses on changing negative thought patterns and behaviors to improve mental health.

Its goal is to help people learn how to identify and change unhelpful thoughts and behaviors while learning coping strategies that can be used in difficult situations.

By doing so, CBT can help individuals gain control over their anxiety and reduce the intensity of their symptoms. 

What is Different About CBT?

CBT differs from other therapeutic approaches because it concentrates on the here-and-now problem to identify current issues instead of focusing on past events. It also helps individuals to understand their irrational beliefs and behaviors, challenge distorted thoughts, evaluate evidence, and explore solutions.

CBT is different from most other types of therapy because:

  • Pragmatic: It helps you find specific problems and tries to solve them.  
  • Present focused- It’s mostly about how you think and act now, not about trying to solve problems from the past.
  • Collaborative – Your therapist won’t tell you what to do; instead, they’ll help you figure out how to deal with your problems.

CBT has become increasingly popular due to its effectiveness in treating a wide range of mental health issues, including depression and anxiety.

It has also been studied extensively by researchers in the field of psychology and is highly effective in treating these issues, such as depression and anxiety2.

Furthermore, it can be adapted to fit each individual’s needs, making it an ideal treatment option for those who may not respond well to other forms of therapy. 

Stop Automatic Negative Thoughts

Stopping negative thought cycles can be achieved with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT).

This type of therapy helps individuals break down things that make them feel bad, anxious, or scared, making the problems more manageable.

Through CBT techniques like accepting and learning from mistakes, thinking positively about the future and developing new social networks, people can start to tackle problems without the help of a therapist.

Doing this can interrupt the negative patterns and improve one’s overall well-being.

Overall, CBT tries to stop these kinds of negative cycles by breaking down the things that make you feel bad, worried, or scared. CBT can help you change your negative thought patterns and feel better by making your problems easier to deal with.

Online CBT Therapy for Anxiety Treatment 

With the rise of technology, many individuals are now turning to online CBT services as a way to manage their anxiety from the comfort of their own homes.

This type of service typically involves receiving one-on-one sessions with a licensed therapist via video chat or phone call.

The sessions are tailored specifically to each individual’s needs and focus on helping them identify unhelpful thought patterns and behaviors while teaching them new coping skills they can use when faced with stressful situations.

Online CBT services also provide additional support such as access to educational materials or resources to promote long-term success in managing anxiety symptoms effectively. 

What To Consider When Choosing A CBT Therapist Online

When looking for a Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) therapist online, there are several factors to consider.

  • It is important to know what type of treatment you are seeking and whether the therapist offers CBT in sessions.
  • You should also take into account the severity of your psychological condition and if you have a strong preference for a face to face sessions in-to-face therapy or prefer online.
  • Additionally, you may want to ask friends and family members for referrals or search online for potential therapists.
  • Furthermore, make sure that the therapist specializes in the area that you need help with such as marriage trouble or teen issues.
  • Lastly, look into the credentials of the therapist and make sure they are certified in CBT.

Of course, you should also consider location and whether or not your insurance covers CBT therapy.

How to Use ZocDoc to Quickly Find CBT Covered By Insurance Near You

ZocDoc: ZocDoc is an online platform that makes it easy to find local doctors near you who are within your insurance network. With the ability to read reviews, book appointments and find the best providers for your needs, ZocDoc can help you get the care you need quickly and easily.

Here’s how to use ZocDoc to find a cognitive behavioral therapist near you:

  1. Go to ZocDoc’s homepage and enter your location
  2. Click on “Therapy” in the list of services
  3. Select “Cognitive Behavioral Therapy” from the list of specialties
  4. Enter your insurance information and choose any other relevant filters such as gender or availability
  5. You will now see a list of CBT professionals who meet your criteria
  6. Read through each profile carefully, looking at their ratings, reviews, education, and personal bio; then select one that seems like a good fit for you
  7. When you click on their profile page, it will show available dates and times; click on your desired time slot to book the appointment

Is CBT just As Effective Online?

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is a type of talk therapy that has been proven to be effective for many different mental health issues2,3.

It can be done in person or online, and research has shown that it can be just as effective when done online. Some studies have found that online CBT can even be more effective than in-person CBT for certain mental health conditions too.

Online CBT is convenient and accessible, and it allows people to get the help they need without having to leave their homes. It also offers flexibility, since you can work with your therapist at any time of day or night.

The key to successful online CBT is finding a qualified therapist who understands how to use technology effectively and safely. Make sure you find someone who is experienced in providing online therapy and who is comfortable using video conferencing software such as Skype or Zoom.

Overall, research shows that online CBT can be just as effective as in-person therapy for many mental health issues. If you are considering trying this form of therapy, make sure you find a qualified therapist who understands how to use technology effectively and safely.

Does Insurance Cover Online CBT Therapy?

If you have insurance, you may be able to find an online therapy provider who will accept your insurance plan.

Most insurance companies cover online therapy services, and some even offer reimbursements for the cost of online therapy.

Companies like Talkspace accepts insurance from major providers such as Premera, Optum, and Blue Cross Blue Shield. It’s important to check if your plan is covered by your insurance provider before signing up for any online therapy services.

Affordable online therapy can provide a convenient way to access mental health care without having to leave home. If you are considering online CBT therapy, it’s worth checking with your own health insurance provider to see if they cover the cost.

Does Medicare Cover CBT Online Therapy?

Yes, according to Medicare.Gov Part B4, Medicare covers Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) online therapy.

Most major insurance plans, including Medicaid and Medicare, cover virtual or in-person doctor’s visits for online cognitive behavior therapy. In addition, Medicare covers:

  • Medicare covers one depression screening per year, conducted in a primary care doctor’s office.
  • It pays for individual and group psychotherapy with qualified professionals.
  • Family counseling is covered if it is part of the treatment plan.
  • Tests to assess progress and psychiatric evaluations are included.
  • Medication management and certain prescribed drugs (e.g. injections) are eligible for coverage.
  • Diagnostic tests and partial hospitalization are also covered.

Your doctor can refer you to a CBT therapist or help you find a counselor or psychologist experienced in it.

How Much Is CBT Therapy Online?

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) online is a great option for those who want to access mental health services from the comfort of their own home. The cost of CBT online varies depending on the provider but generally ranges from $30-$200 per session.

Here are some steps to help you find out how much CBT therapy online will cost:

  1. Research different providers and compare prices.
  2. Check if your insurance covers any portion of the cost.
  3. See if there are any discounts or sliding scale fees available.
  4. Ask about payment plans or other financing options that may be available.

In general, CBT therapy online is slightly more affordable than traditional in-person therapy sessions, and it can provide access to quality care regardless of location or financial situation.

How Long Does It Take For CBT To Work For Anxiety?

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is a type of psychotherapy that can help people manage their anxiety.

  • It typically consists of weekly sessions lasting 1-2 hours for about 12 weeks, although the length of treatment may vary depending on the individual’s needs.
  • Intensive CBT, which involves more frequent sessions, can be completed in as little as 5 to 20 weeks.

Overall, CBT is effective in reducing symptoms of anxiety and other mental health issues. While it may take some time to see results from CBT, many people find that they start feeling better after just a few sessions.

The Best Platforms For CBT Online For Anxiety

If you’re looking for the best online therapy platforms, for CBT online to help with anxiety, there are a few key factors to consider.

  1. First, make sure that the platform is reputable and has licensed therapists available. Some of the most popular options include BetterHelp, Brightside or Talkspace, MDLive, Teen Counseling, Pride Counseling,, Cerebral, NOCD, and Thriveworks.
  2. Second, decide what type of therapy you need. For example, if you’re looking for help with depression or OCD specifically then Brightside and NOCD are good choices respectively. If you want a more general approach then BetterHelp or Talkspace might be better options.
  3. Thirdly, consider your budget and whether insurance coverage is available. Some services such as Talkspace offer insurance coverage while others like have different payment plans.

Finally, make sure that the platform offers the type of support that you need – whether it’s text messaging or video chat sessions – so that you can get the most out of your therapy experience.

Overall, there are many great platforms for CBT online for anxiety and it’s important to do your research before deciding which one is right for you.

With the right platform and therapist in place, you can start taking steps toward managing your anxiety safely and effectively.

How to Compare The Best Online CBT Options

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is a type of talk therapy that can help people manage mental health issues. It works by helping you identify and change negative thought patterns and behaviors. When it comes to online CBT, there are many options available.

When looking for the best online CBT option, it’s important to consider your individual needs. Some factors to consider include cost, convenience, and the type of therapist you’d like to work with. You’ll also want to make sure the affordable online therapy platform is secure and private.

It’s also important to look for an online CBT provider who offers evidence-based treatments such as cognitive restructuring, exposure therapy, or relaxation techniques. You’ll want to make sure that the provider has experience in treating your specific mental health issue.

Finally, it’s important to find an online CBT provider who offers support throughout the process. This could include live sessions, access to resources such as articles and videos about mental health topics, or access to a community of other people who are going through similar experiences.

By taking the time to research different online CBT options and considering your individual needs, you can find a provider who will be able to help you reach your goals.

Best For CBT Therapy With Online Psychiatry (Brightside)

Are you looking for a mental health solution that fits your lifestyle?

Brightside is an online therapy platform dedicated to treating adults ages 18 and older, for anxiety and depression, with CBT as the main treatment method. It offers evidence-based care to those experiencing anxiety and depression, with the flexibility of online therapy. You can get medication management and psychiatry services from licensed psychiatric providers and therapists, with no need to wait.

Subscribing to Brightside might be a good option if you’re looking to address various symptoms of depression or anxiety.

Best Self-Guided CBT Apps

If you’re looking for a self-guided CBT app to help improve your mental and physical health, there are many options available.

  • CBT-i Coach: This app provides educational materials and exercises to help better manage symptoms of depression, PTSD, and insomnia.
  • SuperBetter: Through gameful activities and challenges, users can learn to overcome stress, anxiety, and depression in their own life.
  • MoodTools: This app offers tools for self-monitoring including a Symptom Checklist as well as tips for improvement such as cognitive reframing techniques and access to inspirational quotes and videos.
  • Calm Harm: Targeted at teenagers who are struggling with emotional instability or urges to self-harm, this app provides activities that can help you manage these issues in healthy ways such as distraction techniques or relaxation exercises.
  • MoodPath: An app to help diagnose and treat depression, MoodPath offers tools to track your mental health through assessments, audio exercises, and helpful tips.
  • Thinkmood: With activities tailored for adults and children such as artwork therapy, virtual trips and guided meditations, this app helps individuals overcome anxiety and stress.
  • Woebot: This AI-powered chatbot is designed to help with emotional regulation and coping strategies for issues like depression, stress, and negative thinking patterns.
  • Tame Anxiety: Focusing on decreasing the frequency of anxious thoughts through evidence-based techniques such as exposure therapy and mindfulness, this app helps users reclaim their power over anxiety.

What Are Some CBT Strategies For Anxiety?

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is a type of psychotherapy that can help people struggling with anxiety. CBT focuses on changing patterns of thinking and behavior to help reduce symptoms of anxiety.

Two common strategies used in CBT are Calm Breathing and Progressive Muscle Relaxation.

  1. Calm Breathing involves consciously slowing down the breathing, which can help reduce feelings of stress and anxiety.
  2. Progressive Muscle Relaxation involves tensing and then relaxing different muscle groups throughout the body, which can help reduce physical tension caused by stress or anxiety.

Other strategies used in CBT for anxiety include Mindfulness Meditation, Successive Approximation, Writing Self-Statements to Counteract Negative Thoughts, Visualizing the Best Parts of a Situation, Questioning Fearful Thoughts, Trying Out New or Different Activities, and Using Your Senses to Ground Yourself in the Present Moment.

What Is The 5-part CBT Model?

The Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) model consists of five parts which interlink to create an understanding of how a situation affects our behavior.

  1. The first part is the Situation, consisting of who, what, when, where and why elements.
  2. This can lead to Thoughts about the situation, e.g., “Bob doesn’t like me”.
  3. Emotions associated with these thoughts can be negative and single word descriptors can be used to describe our feelings in this state.
  4. The Thoughts/Emotions link closely to our Physical state which may slump as a result of feeling down, sad or rejected.
  5. Our Behavior is the last part and it will be impacted by our mood state; we may go home, avoid friends or Bob’s phone calls in this example.

What Are The 2 CBT Techniques To Change Your Negative Thoughts?

The three main CBT techniques to change negative thoughts are cognitive restructuring and journaling.

  1. Cognitive restructuring involves challenging and changing negative thoughts or beliefs about oneself or the world around them. This can involve identifying any irrational thinking patterns, questioning the evidence for those thoughts, and replacing them with more balanced ones.
  2. Journaling is another way to express emotions in writing, which can help people gain insight into their feelings and behavior.

Overall, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy techniques can be very effective in helping people manage their mental health issues by identifying and changing negative thought patterns or behaviors. With the right guidance from a therapist, these techniques can help individuals lead healthier lives.

Is EMDR Or CBT Better For Anxiety?

When it comes to treating anxiety, both Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) can be effective. However, research suggests that EMDR may be more effective than CBT in reducing symptoms of anxiety, but for depression both treatments were equal.

A 2018 meta-analysis5 found that EMDR was better than CBT in alleviating anxiety, which is consistent with the findings of other studies. Additionally, this meta-analysis determined that EMDR is more effective for the treatment of PTSD symptoms when compared to CBT therapy.

The differences between EMDR therapy and cognitive-behavioral therapy lie in how they extract patient information, how they administer treatment, and the focus of each type of therapy.

While CBT focuses on changing negative thoughts and behaviors that contribute to mental health problems, EMDR focuses on processing past experiences that may be causing distress or difficulty functioning.

Can Anxiety Be Treated With CBT Alone?

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is a type of therapy that has been proven to be effective in treating anxiety. It focuses on changing negative thought patterns and behaviors that can lead to anxiety.

It typically takes 6-24 sessions of CBT to successfully treat moderate anxiety, but the exact amount of time will depend on the individual and their specific needs.

Exposure therapy, which involves facing fears, is an important part of CBT and can help people manage their anxiety more effectively.

Can I Do CBT Therapy On My Own?

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is a type of therapy that can help people work through mental health issues. It can be done with the help of a therapist or on your own. According to NAMI6, many studies have found that self-directed CBT can be very effective, and it is possible to practice CBT at home.

When practicing CBT on your own, it is important to remember that change won’t happen overnight. Your goal should be to focus on the thoughts that come to mind throughout the day and make a conscious effort in challenging any negative or unhelpful thoughts.

Self-Help CBT is a great way to practice CBT at home and build new skills for managing mental health issues.

However, if you are struggling with mental health issues, or more severe forms of depression and anxiety, it may be beneficial to seek professional help from a therapist as they will be able to provide guidance and support throughout your journey.

Is Online CBT Better Than Face-To-Face Anxiety?

CBT, or Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, is a type of therapy that helps people manage their mental health. It can be done in person with a therapist or online through an app or video chat. Both forms of CBT have been proven to help reduce anxiety and depression symptoms.

When it comes to deciding between online and face-to-face CBT, there are pros and cons to each. Face-to-face CBT allows for more direct interaction between the therapist and the patient, which can be beneficial for some people. However, online CBT can be more convenient and accessible for those who don’t have access to a therapist in their area or who prefer the privacy of their own home.

Online CBT also offers more flexibility when it comes to scheduling appointments and allows patients to work at their own pace. This can be especially helpful for those who struggle with time management or have difficulty committing to regular appointments.

Ultimately, the decision between online and face-to-face CBT should be based on what works best for you as an individual. If you’re unsure which option is best for you, talk to your doctor or therapist about your options so they can help you decide what’s right for you.

Online CBT Therapy for Anxiety Conclusion: 

Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is an evidence-based psychotherapy that helps individuals identify unhelpful thought patterns and behaviors to reduce anxiety symptoms.

It has been studied extensively by researchers in the field of psychology and is highly effective in treating these issues.

With the rise of technology, more individuals are now turning towards online CBT services as a way to manage their anxiety from home with one-on-one sessions tailored specifically for them along with additional support materials or resources if needed.

If you are looking for an effective way to manage your anxiety symptoms, consider trying out online cognitive behavioral therapy today (or an alternative therapy)!

If you have any questions about online CBT solutions, feel free to leave a comment below. Your mental health is essential, and we’re here to help guide you through your journey. Also, if there’s a particular mental health platform, app, or course you’d like our team at Online Mental Health Reviews to explore next, let us know — your suggestion could be our next review!


  1. How it works – Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). (n.d.).
  2. Crits-Christoph, P., Newman, M. G., Rickels, K., Gallop, R., Gibbons, M. B. C., Hamilton, J. L., Ring-Kurtz, S., & Pastva, A. M. (2011, December). Combined medication and cognitive therapy for generalized anxiety disorder. Journal of Anxiety Disorders, 25(8), 1087–1094.
  3. Wright, J. H., Owen, J. J., Richards, D., Eells, T. D., Richardson, T., Brown, G. K., Barrett, M., Rasku, M. A., Polser, G., & Thase, M. E. (2019, March 19). Computer-Assisted Cognitive-Behavior Therapy for Depression. The Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, 80(2).
  4. Outpatient Mental Health Coverage. (n.d.). Outpatient Mental Health Coverage.
  5. Khan, A. M., Dar, S., Ahmed, R., Bachu, R., Adnan, M., & Kotapati, V. P. (2018, September 4). Cognitive Behavioral Therapy versus Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing in Patients with Post-traumatic Stress Disorder: Systematic Review and Meta-analysis of Randomized Clinical Trials. Cureus.
  6. Discovering New Options: Self-Help Cognitive Behavioral Therapy | NAMI: National Alliance on Mental Illness. (n.d.). Discovering New Options: Self-Help Cognitive Behavioral Therapy | NAMI: National Alliance on Mental Illness.

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