Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT®) is an evidence-based treatment for persons struggling with emotion regulation issues (e.g., rapid mood changes, intense and debilitating emotions, etc.). It was developed by Dr. Marsha Linehan and colleagues at the University of Washington (The Linehan Institute and Behavioral Tech). Since its creation in the early 1990’s, DBT® has been shown to be effective for a broad range of issues from severe suicidal ideation to problems in maintaining relationships. The standard DBT® protocol consists of:
weekly individual therapy
weekly skills training class
self-reported diary card completed weekly by the client
weekly consultation team meeting for all DBT® therapists on the team
availability of phone coaching
DBT® is provided by a team of therapists who meet weekly for consultation on how to improve their skills as therapists adhere to the treatment principles and protocols. Our DBT® Team has participated in extensive specialized intensive training provided by The Linehan Institute and Behavioral Tech, creators of DBT® and regularly attends reputable trainings nationwide. The overarching goal of DBT® is to obtain “a life worth living” by providing skills to manage emotions, to tolerate distress and to improve relationships. DBT® has been shown to be effective in reducing suicidal behaviors, hospitalizations, and problems with anger, depression, and hopelessness. DBT® treats multiple modes of dysregulation including emotion dysregulation which is defined as a combination of extreme emotional vulnerability with difficulty in regulating emotions once they are aroused. DBT® clients learn an array of skills to manage their emotions and the impulsive and almost automatic behaviors that often accompany strong emotions. In individual therapy each client works on their highly personalized treatment plan to reduce the behaviors identified as getting in the way of attaining their long-term goals by increasing their use of skillful behaviors. Clients who enter DBT® are asked to make a year-long commitment to attend both individual therapy and skills training class. Most clients can see significant improvement in their lives.