behavior therapy

noun

variants or behavioral therapy or behavior modification or behavioral modification
: psychotherapy that is concerned with the treatment (as by desensitization or aversion therapy) of observable behaviors rather than underlying psychological processes and that applies principles of learning to substitute desirable responses and behavior patterns for undesirable ones (such as phobias or obsessions) compare cognitive therapy
behavior therapist noun
or behavioral therapist

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web For children 12 and older, use of weight loss medications is appropriate, in addition to health behavior therapy and lifestyle treatment, AAP says. Jamie Gumbrecht, CNN, 9 Jan. 2023 Generalized anxiety disorder may require medication in addition to behavior therapy. Amber Smith, Discover Magazine, 17 Oct. 2022 An article on Sunday about the benefits of dialectical behavior therapy on suicidal or self-harming teens misidentified the profession of Michele Berk. New York Times, 30 Aug. 2022 Phobias are usually treated with a combination of behavior therapy and medication. Amber Smith, Discover Magazine, 17 Oct. 2022 Social Anxiety Disorder can be treated with cognitive-behavior therapy, as the practice can help manage the thoughts and physical symptoms associated with the order. Dominique Fluker, Essence, 2 Dec. 2022 People reported at the time that Gomez underwent dialectical behavior therapy for anxiety and depression after having a panic attack in the hospital during her second visit. Alyssa Bailey, ELLE, 4 Nov. 2022 Previous studies have shown mindfulness works better than no treatment or at least as well as education or more formal behavior therapy in reducing anxiety, depression and other mental woes. Time, 9 Nov. 2022 Previous studies have shown mindfulness works better than no treatment or at least as well as education or more formal behavior therapy in reducing anxiety, depression and other mental woes. Lindsey Tanner, Fortune, 9 Nov. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'behavior therapy.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History

First Known Use

1937, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of behavior therapy was in 1937

Dictionary Entries Near behavior therapy

Cite this Entry

“Behavior therapy.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/behavior%20therapy. Accessed 2 Feb. 2023.

Medical Definition

behavior therapy

noun
variants or behavioral therapy or behavior modification or behavioral modification
: psychotherapy that is concerned with the treatment (as by desensitization or aversion therapy) of observable behaviors rather than underlying psychological processes and that applies principles of learning to substitute desirable responses and behavior patterns for undesirable ones (such as phobias or obsessions) compare cognitive behavioral therapy, cognitive therapy

More from Merriam-Webster on behavior therapy

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