What is Dialectical Behavior Therapy?

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Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) is a structured, short-term approach to therapy to treat individuals with various mental health concerns, such as self-destructive behaviors, emotional regulation difficulties, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, and other trauma-related disorders.

DBT helps you accept yourself as you are, despite negative patterns of thinking you may have due to various life experiences. This acceptance makes more room for you to change negative thinking that may harm your mental health.

Dialectical Behavior Therapy teaches you tolerance to more adequately cope with negative or difficult emotions and strategies to change behavior and reduce negative thoughts.

Your therapist will help you recognize and name your feelings as they arise without judging them or shaming yourself for experiencing them. You will also practice distress tolerance by finding ways to cope with destructive urges more positively. Your therapist might also include mindfulness techniques, which teach you to be present in the moment.

DBT can be used individually or in a group setting. Group settings for DBT help practice skills and work on interpersonal communication, as another goal of DBT is to improve relationship skills.

Therapists Who Specialize in Using Dialectical Behavior Therapy