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Dialectical Behavior Therapy

What is the history of Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)?

Developed by psychologist Dr. Marsha M. Linehan in the late 1980s, Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) originated as a response to the limitations of traditional cognitive-behavioral therapies for individuals with borderline personality disorder (BPD). 

DBT combines cognitive-behavioral techniques with principles of mindfulness and acceptance to help individuals manage intense emotions, improve interpersonal relationships, and develop skills for distress tolerance and emotional regulation.

What is DBT?

DBT is rooted in the dialectical philosophy, which emphasizes the integration of opposites. In the context of therapy, this involves balancing acceptance and change. By focusing on acceptance of oneself and the need for change, DBT aims to empower individuals to navigate complex emotions and build a life worth living

What are the Benefits of DBT?

Dialectical behavior therapist will provide individuals comprehensive skills to manage painful memories and emotions and decrease conflicts in their relationships. 

  • Emotional Regulation

    • DBT equips individuals with tools to identify, understand, and regulate intense emotions, reducing impulsive reactions.
  • Improves Interpersonal Skills

    • Through skills training in interpersonal effectiveness, individuals learn to navigate relationships more effectively, fostering healthier connections.
  • Mindfulness Integration

    • DBT incorporates mindfulness practices to promote present-moment awareness, contributing to overall emotional well-being.
  • Improves Quality of Life

    • The 4 modules of DBT teach skill in distress tolerance, emotional regulation, mindfulness & interpersonal effectiveness. These skills help improve quality of life. 

How Does it Work Exactly?

DBT essentially works with individuals to help them find ways to manage their negative emotions so they can feel balanced, in control, and able to interact respectfully and successfully. The message at the heart of DBT is acceptance and change.

When is DBT Used?

Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) has gained widespread recognition for its effectiveness in treating complex emotional and behavioral challenges. Its integration of acceptance and change strategies, along with a focus on skill development, makes it a valuable therapeutic approach for individuals seeking to improve their emotional well-being and build a more fulfilling life. DBT is effective with teens. It can also successfully treat people with depression, bipolar disorder, borderline personality disorder, PTSD, eating disorders, and substance abuse.