Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Patients with Chronic Headache

  • Kyung Bong Koh


Numerous studies have demonstrated migraine and/or tension headache comorbid with depression and/or anxiety. Cognitive behavioral treatment (CBT) has been found to be an efficacious treatment for migraine and tension headache. The goal of CBT is to alter symptom-related physiological activity indirectly by changing the way clients cope with headache-eliciting stressors. This treatment focuses directly on their cognitive and behavioral changes. CBT can be divided into education, self-monitoring, and problem-solving or coping skills training. The therapeutic processes in two cases with chronic headache were presented, demonstrating their cognitive distortions and maladaptive assumptions. Psychological tools such as sentence completion test (SCT) can be used as a method to discover cognitive distortions instead of self-assessments. The existing literature suggests that cognitive therapy may be more effective in maintaining long-term treatment effect as well as reducing headaches than biofeedback treatment in patients with chronic headache.


Migraine Tension headache Cognitive behavioral treatment (CBT) Education Self-monitoring Problem-solving Coping skills training 


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kyung Bong Koh
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PsychiatryYonsei University College of MedicineSeoulKorea

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