What is Cognitive Remediation Therapy?
Cognitive Remediation Therapy (CRT) involves the use of behavioural strategies, with the goal of improving various cognitive processes and being better equipped when faced with cognitively challenging tasks. CRT aims to improve neurocognitive abilities such as attention, memory, and executive functioning. It is commonly used to help people with multiple diagnoses improve their overall cognitive functioning.
Core features include cognitive training techniques, therapist-guided development, and refinement of problem-solving strategies that can be used during cognitive training and in daily life. CRT interventions can be conducted individually or in groups. Some involve the use of computers while others focus primarily on pen-and-paper tasks. CRT is especially effective when combined with other psychosocial rehabilitation or skill-training treatments
Cognitive Remediation for Treating Psychotic Disorders
Those with schizophrenia and other psychotic disorders often develop cognitive deficits. Cognitive deficits can impair daily functioning and are a major factor in chronic disability. These impairments can range from hallucinations to inappropriate behaviour, depression, disorganized speech, or and lack of emotion. In recent years, a number of CRT techniques have been developed and adopted in multimodal treatment approaches toward treating psychotic disorders.
It has previously been established that CRT can be effective at reducing cognitive deficits and improving functional outcomes for those living with psychotic disorders, including those living with more chronic or severe cases. Studies have also supported the usefulness of CRT when applied in the early course of treating psychotic disorders, and when applied with subjects who have been deemed at risk of developing a psychotic disorder.
CRT is usually offered in conjunction with medication and is not intended to be viewed as a suitable alternative.