What is Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)?


Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) is an evidence-based, comprehensive treatment that integrates cognitive-behavioral therapy with dialectical philosophy and eastern principals such as mindfulness and acceptance.  In DBT your therapist will validate your difficulties and ways of coping while also teaching you specific DBT skills to assist you to cope more effectively.  There are 4 main DBT skillsets: (1) Mindfulness skills help you to experience the present moment rather than be preoccupied with thoughts and feelings about the past or worries about the future. (2) Distress Tolerance skills help you to manage moments of intense emotion in positive ways. (3) Emotion Regulation skills help you to develop better understanding of your emotions and learn to regulate or balance them better.  (4) Interpersonal Effectiveness skills help you to learn assertiveness, get your needs met and maintain valuable relationships.  DBT is helpful for a wide variety of problems including depression, anxiety, anger, self-harm, suicidal thoughts/behaviors, bipolar disorder, personality disorders, impulsivity, substance addictions, process addictions (i.e. gambling, shopping), eating disorders and problems interacting with others.  Overall, DBT can help you feel more in control as you build the life you want to live.