What is Dialectical Behavior Therapy

Dialectical behavior therapy, or DBT, is a type of cognitive behavioral therapy that is used to treat substance abuse, borderline personality disorder, eating disorders and other self-destructive behaviors. Its main goals are to help people cope with stress, improve their relationships with others and live in the moment.

Awakenings Treatment Center is a dual diagnosis rehab in California that offers DBT. We have this therapy to be successful for many of our clients, especially those who are looking for and open to change. Below we share a brief overview of what dialectical behavior therapy is and how it can benefit your recovery.

Understanding the Four Parts of DBT

Dialectical behavior therapy has four main parts:

  • Individual therapy. DBT theory suggests that some people react quickly and emotionally, with extreme mood swings. Individual therapy helps people with DBT cope with these sudden urges of emotion in a healthy manner.
  • Group skills training. Skills training is frequently taught in groups so that the skills can be practiced in a social setting. The skills that are addressed are:
  • Focusing on the “now” and living in the moment. Not worrying about the past or future.
  • Distress tolerance. Learning to accept yourself and the current situation you are in.
  • Interpersonal effectiveness. Learning how to be assertive in relationships while being positive and healthy.
  • Emotion regulation. Realizing negative emotions and how to turn them around with positive experiences.
  • Phone coaching in between sessions. If you are having a difficult time, phone coaching can be used in between counseling sessions. These phone sessions can decrease suicidal behaviors.
  • Consultation team for health care providers. A consultation team will monitor your progress to ensure you are staying motivated and learning new skills.

Improved Outcomes with Dialectical Behavior Therapy

Dialectical behavior therapy is not for everyone, but it is often in dual diagnosis treatment in Agoura because these clients are high-risk and harder to treat. Mental health conditions like PTSD, bipolar disorder and borderline personality disorder affect relationships, work performance and a person’s safety, which is why additional therapies are often needed.

Some of the outcomes of DBT are:

  • Less frequent and severe suicidal behavior
  • Less time spent in the hospital
  • Less likely to drop out of addiction treatment in Agoura
  • Improved relationships and social functioning
  • Better recognition of emotions and how to manage them

Awakenings Treatment Center offers dialectical behavior therapy that is designed to change harmful patterns of behavior. To learn more about DBT and how it’s being used to change lives, contact us today.