Combination of Spirituality and Cognitive-Behavioral Family Therapy on Treatment of Generalized Anxiety Disorders


Therapeutic interventions based on specific religious and spiritual teachings have proven to be effective in dealing with psychological disorders especially general anxiety disorders. Notwithstanding the signs of effectiveness within the integral approaches consisting of religious, spiritual and family therapy’s interventions, there are few studies that indicate the exploration of the integrative implications of the aforementioned interventions. Objective: The present research was to examine the effectiveness of integrative therapeutic interventions consisting of spirituality and Cognitive Behavioral Family Therapy on treatment of generalized anxiety disorders. Method: Case study. Participants: Two clients (one male aged 43 and one female, 37 years old). Procedure: Data was obtained based on the clinical interview, DSM-IV-TR criteria, psychological tests and psychiatrist’s diagnosis. In the course of 55 weekly therapeutic sessions for the male client and 39 weekly sessions for the female client, a series of techniques with a focus on cognitive restructuring were applied. The participants were also given coaching skills, relaxation skills, problem solving techniques, relationship management skills, and positive psychology techniques. The techniques were: a focus on the integrative implications of spiritual therapy and its emphasis on shared love for all human beings, love for others regardless of their ethnicity, belief in monotheism and belief in the day of judgment and hereafter. Findings: The results of pre-tests and post-tests along with a one year follow-up indicated the efficiency of the treatment while highlighting the vital role of integrative interventions based on spirituality and family cognitive behaviour therapy. The results also supported the role of families in contributing to the treatment of the anxiety disorder. Discussion for Further Research: The enhancement of family members social competencies based on a focus on spirituality and cognitive behavior techniques may facilitate the process of modification of thinking patterns of clients.

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Khodayarifard, M. & Fatemi, S. (2013). Combination of Spirituality and Cognitive-Behavioral Family Therapy on Treatment of Generalized Anxiety Disorders. Psychology, 4, 427-432. doi: 10.4236/psych.2013.44060.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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