Types Of Cognitive Distortions

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Axis I Disorders

Cognitive distortions were originally identified in patients with depression. Since then, clinicians have expanded their identification and treatment of cognitive distortions to many other disorders (DiTomasso, Martin, & Kovnat, 2000; Freeman, Pretzer, Fleming, & Simon, 1990, 2004; Freeman & Fusco, 2000; Wells, 1997). Further, cognitive distortions have been found to play a role in sexual dysfunction (Leiblum & Rosen, 2000), eating disorders (Shafran, Teachman, Kerry, & Rachman, 1999), sex offender behavior (McGrath, Cann, & Konopasky, 1998), and gambling addictions (Delfabbro & Winefield, 2000; Fisher, Beech, & Browne, 1999). In addition to the identification of cognitive distortions in Axis I disorders, distortions appear to play an important role in Axis II disorders.

Axis II Disorders

Cognitive distortions have been identified in patients diagnosed with personality disorders. Freeman et al. (1990, 2004) have identified dichotomous thinking as a primary distortion in patients with Dependent Personality Disorder. Layden et al. (1993) have identified several cognitive distortions used by patients with Borderline Personality Disorder. Similarly, use of cognitive distortions by patients with Histrionic Personality Disorder (dichotomous thinking, jumping to conclusions, and emotional reasoning), Narcissistic Personality Disorder (magnification of self, selective abstraction, minimization of others), and Obsessive-Compulsive Personality Disorder (magnification, "should" statements, perfectionism, and dichotomous thinking) have been documented in the clinical literature (Beck, Freeman, et al., 1990; Beck, Freeman, Davis, et al., 2004).

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