Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) was developed by Marsha Linehan as a treatment plan to help those with borderline personality disorder live better lives. The program teaches participants the skills they need to control their emotions and behaviors, rather than letting these things control them. DBT can be used as a standalone program or in conjunction with other therapies and medications to treat this mental illness. It’s now widely recognised as one of the most effective forms of treatment for those who struggle with borderline personality disorder.
1) What is DBT?
Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) is a type of cognitive-behavioral therapy. DBT helps people who are struggling with chaotic or unstable emotions, behaviors, and thoughts. It was originally designed to treat individuals with borderline personality disorder (BPD), but it is also used to treat other mental health conditions. DBT focuses on helping people learn new skills that can be used in different life situations to help them cope better.
2) Who Is It For?
People with borderline personality disorder (BPD), as well as people who care about them. BPD is an emotionally intense and unstable condition that makes it hard to interact with others. As a result, those suffering from BPD often find themselves isolated and alone, making treatment more difficult. Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) can be useful in teaching skills to cope with strong emotions, manage relationships, and think about one’s problems in a new way. As DBT teaches these skills over several months or years, it can change how people experience their emotions and lead them to feel calmer and less overwhelmed.
3) How Can It Help?
Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) is an evidence-based treatment developed by Dr. Marsha Linehan in response to a lack of effective treatments for patients with borderline personality disorder (BPD). Although DBT is not indicated as a primary treatment, it can be used along with other traditional treatments to enhance their effectiveness. There are four main components to DBT: individual therapy, group skills training, phone coaching and therapist consultation team meetings. In addition, family and friends can be included in skills training sessions if they have been identified as being potentially useful support members of the patient’s support system. The combination of these five elements has been found to be more effective than either individual therapy or dialectical behavioral therapy alone for patients with BPD.
4) Getting Started With DBT
DBT was initially designed to help patients with borderline personality disorder, but it has been shown to have a positive effect on a wide range of mental health issues. The National Alliance on Mental Illness offers a brief description of DBT and suggestions on where to start. If you have borderline personality disorder or think you might have BPD, NAMI suggests starting with your primary care physician. If he or she doesn’t know about DBT, suggest they call their local psychiatric hospital for assistance finding someone who does. Once you find someone with expertise in DBT, find out if they offer sessions in person or via telephone (also known as telehealth). Both options are effective; research studies say patient outcomes are similar regardless of where treatment is received.