Dialectical Behavior Therapy – How Does DBT Work in 2021?

Dialectical Behavior Therapy – How Does DBT Work in 2021?

What is Dialectical Behavior Therapy?

Dialectical Behavior Therapy, also known as DBT, is a modified version of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy that focuses on making people capable of coping with their default stress and emotions. 

DBT was first introduced to treat Borderline Personality Disorder. But with time, it has started being used to treat many other different types of mental health conditions. It focuses on the emotion of people and the behaviors directly attached to those emotions. It believes that behavioral change is possible if people can control the emotions that create the behavior.

History of Dialectical Behavior Therapy

Dialectical Behavior Therapy was first introduced by Marsha M. Linehan in the late 1980s. She was a psychology researcher from the University of Washington. She developed this therapy by modifying CBT in order to help people who have Borderline Personality Disorder and suicidal thoughts. 

After that, several researches were done. According to those researches, DBT is also effective in treating drug and alcohol abuse, depression, traumatic brain injuries, post-traumatic stress disorder, mood disorders, and binge eating disorder. 

Also, many other researches have proven that DBT is also effective in treating spectrum mood disorder and chemical dependence. It also helps to survive sexual abuse.

What are the Six Main Points of Dialectical Behavior Therapy?

What are the Six Main Points of Dialectical Behavior Therapy

Dialectical Behavior Therapy stands on a structure of 6 main points. These points are the main principles of this therapy that helps people to develop a new type of thinking pattern and behavioral skills.

Below are the 6 main points of DBT-

  • Acceptance and change- Positive change is possible when people accept the situation and look for alternatives.
  • Behavioral- Analysing problems is a must to replace those with a healthy alternative.
  • Cognitive- Thoughts and behaviors that are not helpful should be changed into more positives.
  • Skill sets- Learning new skill sets and adopting new hobbies may help to change easily.
  • Collaboration- Working in collaboration with others as a team helps to bring better results and ensures peace of mind.
  • Support- It is mandatory to support others for a positive change as it helps to make thoughts and actions better.

DBT therapists use these 6 main points while designing sessions for clients. Making people understand these 6 main points and integrate these into their actions help to make the therapy effective and successful in the long term.

Dialectical Behavior Therapy Strategies

Dialectical Behavior Therapy Strategies

Though there are 6 main points in which Dialectical Behavior Therapy believes, it uses four main strategies while treating people. Below are the four main strategies.

Mindfulness: This is the very first thing the clients have to learn. Without learning this, it is not possible to learn other skill sets and utilize those in real life. So, therapists focus on developing mindfulness before any other skills when they’re treating clients using DBT.

The whole idea of mindfulness stands on acceptance. When clients become mindful, they can accept the situations and events as those are, and control the overwhelming emotions in their minds created as a response to the situations and events. Controlling emotions means controlling the behaviors caused by those emotions. 

Stressful and negative situations are parts of life, just like positive situations. Learning mindfulness helps the clients to accept this truth and act accordingly. That’s why the very first strategy in DBT is turning the clients into more mindful individuals.

Interpersonal Effectiveness: Interpersonal effectiveness is another strategy that comes just after mindfulness. Interpersonal effectiveness is all about learning the ways to interact with people, how to develop personal relationships and how bad communication creates a stressful situation. 

Developing interpersonal effectiveness helps the clients to understand how their approaches and communications are creating issues and unexpected events. As they are mindful, they accept the faults and issues. Then the therapist helps them to fix those and learn new ways of communicating with people. 

It also helps people to ask for something from people while maintaining a functional and positive relationship. 

Distress Tolerance: This is another strategy that includes developing acceptance. Besides that art of acceptance, the clients also learn here to change the behavior that they do like the reaction to a situation. This phase includes four primary techniques. These are-

  • Self-soothing
  • Improving the situation that causes stress
  • Finding out the pros and cons of a situation
  • Mastering distraction

Radical acceptance is a key focus of distress tolerance. It says that people have to face both positive and negative events in life. So, there is no chance of being judgemental in case of negative events. It is always better to view the situations from a non-judgemental point and accept the outcome. Doing this ensures a better and more structural response. 

Emotion Regulation: This phase is all about learning how to control emotion. It helps the clients to learn new ways to control and direct emotions towards a less negative behavior. This is a bit tough, but with the help from the right person, learning becomes effective.

In this stage, the clients learn to control negative emotions like anger, frustration, anxiety, and depression. Those who face these emotions regularly can learn to control the emotions and behaviors developed by these emotions. 

Thus the clients become stronger and able to avoid the negative impacts of these emotions. Also, they become less vulnerable to the situations and events that create such emotions in them.

Components of Dialectical Behavior Therapy

Dialectical Behavior Therapy focuses on developing mindfulness, enhance communication skills, and improve relationships. So, it follows multiple components to make the treatment as much effective as possible. Below are the main components that DBT use-

Skill Training: Skill training is a group session where people learn skills through interaction, discussion, and group activities. Developing skill is one of the most important parts of DBT. So, skill training or group session is a must in DBT.

In skill training, the therapist gathers the clients together with for group sessions. There, the clients learn, develop, practice, and implement skills. Interaction is vital in these sessions. So, being active is mandatory if someone wants it to be effective. 

Typically skill training happens once a week and lasts for around 2-3 hours. It is expected that there’ll be a total of 24 skill training sessions in a DBT treatment process. 

Individual Therapy: Individual therapy is also an important part of DBT. It allows the therapist and client to spend some time intensely working on the changes required and skills needed to learn. In individual sessions, the therapist focuses on a single client at a time. As the client gets proper attention from the therapist, it is easier to talk about the challenges that they are facing. 

An individual session normally lasts for one hour. Depending on individual needs, it varies. It happens once each week throughout the entire treatment period. 

Phone Coaching: Phone coaching is a necessity too in DBT because it allows the client to get support without big intervals of a week. That’s why many therapists design their treatment process with phone coaching included. 

Phone coaching is an over-the-phone communication between the therapist and the client in the interval between two individual sessions. The phone coaching, the therapist guides the clients to use DBT skills in day-to-day life.

Stages of Dialectical Behavior Therapy

Stages of Dialectical Behavior Therapy

Dialectical Behavior Therapy is a structured and systematic therapy. Because of the nature of the problems it treats, the therapy is divided into stages for steady and effective treatment. DBT is divided into 4 stages which come one by one. Below are the stages of DBT.

Stage 1- Behavioral Stabilization

At the very first stage of therapy, people are more prone to suicidal thoughts, addiction, or self-harm. They have very low self-esteem and that’s why they do a lot of problematic behavior. So, the very first stage focuses on bringing some behavioral stabilization in them. In this stage, therapy is focused on preventing the behavioral issues and taking them to a safer zone. The main goal is to teach them to have some control over behavioral issues.

Stage 2- Mental Stabilization

Even after the expected behavioral stabilization is achieved, mental issues are still there. In the second stage, the therapist works to bring the emotional pains out and explore the traumatic experiences. Therapy is focused on the experiences that have caused such mental and behavioral instability. The main goal of this stage is to help the patients to experience and express the emotional pains instead of burying those. 

Stage 3- Enhancing Quality of Life

After making the patients behaviorally and mentally stable, it is time to focus on the overall improvement. The progress towards normal life started from the very first phase. In this phase, the progress is continued through setting reasonable goals and working to achieve those. The goals are set depending on the situation of the patients. In this stage, the main goal of DBT is to promote stability and happiness.  

Stage 4- To the Next Level

Now it is time to go to the next level. Stage 3 and 4 includes a lot of skill learning process where they learn to cope with life again and advance to the next level. Besides behavioral and mental improvement, the therapist works on spiritual health too. The main goal of this stage is to assist the patients in achieving and maintaining the quality of life and continue the process by themselves.

What is Dialectical Behavior Therapy Used for?

We’ve already known that Dialectical Behavior Therapy focuses on managing emotions by enhancing the acceptance and mindfulness of people. The journey of DBT started with treating borderline personality disorder. With time, it has proven its ability to treat many other issues too. 

What is Dialectical Behavior Therapy Used for

People who are suffering from different emotional and behavioral issues can be treated with DBT. Below are some of the issues that can be effectively treated with DBT.

  • Anxiety Disorder
  • Dependency of Chemical/ Chemical Addiction
  • Depression
  • Bipolar Disorder
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
  • Eating Disorder

All of the disorders above are effects of the emotional actions of people. As DBT focuses on helping people to accept reality, the actions based on emotions become changed. 

Among all the approaches and techniques typically used in DBT, the therapists take the clients through a process that is designed according to their individual needs. Thus, DBT is used for treating the above issues.

How does Dialectical Behavior Therapy Work?

Dialectical Behavior Therapy is not similar to CBT to many extents, but you’ll still find a lot of similarities as CBT is the root of DBT. It is mainly useful for people who are struggling to control their emotions and actions caused by those emotions.

Normally, emotional people tend to think black-and-white. This means they remain stuck in a side. Their belief is the first thing that matters to them. This is not a healthy way of thinking. It harms relationships with others. 

DBT helps the clients to balance two different thinking at the same time. Everything that happens can be seen from at least two perspectives. In DBT, the therapist helps the clients to see situations or events from two perspectives so that they can avoid one-sided thinking. This helps them to balance their emotions as they see the opposite part. 

For example- let’s take the case of Borderline Personality Disorder. People with this disorder look at everything with an ‘either-or’ type of thinking pattern. In a situation, they think either it is good or it is bad. There is nothing in between. DBT helps to build up a thinking process that shows the overall circumstances and helps to agree on whatever happens so that they can accept it easily.

How Long does Dialectical Behavior Therapy Take?

There is no set time or duration of Dialectical Behavior Therapy. Typically DBT takes around 6 months. The patient has to sit with the therapist at least once a week in these 6 months. The duration of each session is around 2 hours. 

The session duration may vary. The length of treatment is also variable. It all depends on the condition of the patient and the approach of the therapist. Depending on these, the length of treatment and session duration varies. Progress of the patient has also an impact on the time needed for a successful treatment using DBT.

How much does Dialectical Behavior Therapy Cost?

The cost of Dialectical Behavior Therapy depends on a number of issues. Let’s start from the basics.

The basic cost for DBT is the cost of therapy sessions. We’ve already said that it includes sessions per week and 1-2 phone calls in between the sessions. Typically, you’ll find therapists who can do this for 150-250 USD per week. However, this is somewhat an average number. There are therapists who can do this for less than 150 USD or more than 250 USD. 

DBT takes around six months. In these six months, the total number of sessions is 24. So, now you can calculate the overall cost for DBT.

In most cases, insurance covers the cost of DBT treatment. So, if your insurance does this, you’ll have huge support. 

Typically, DBT doesn’t need the patient to stay in a treatment facility. But if you want, the cost of residence will also be added to the cost of treatment. 

This is just an idea. Depending on the therapist from whom you’re receiving the therapy, the cost per session varies. So, it is better to look for the therapists around you and check how much they charge per session. 

No matter what is your budget range, you’ll find someone who can help you. So, spend some time finding out the therapists around you and check their rates. This will help you to get a better idea about how much you would need to get the treatment.

Is Dialectical Behavior Therapy Covered by Insurance?

Answering this question is a bit difficult. The answer is- it depends.

There was a time where mental health issues were not counted as severe as physical health issues. So, insurance companies didn’t cover expenses for mental health treatments. However, the time has changed now. 

Now mental health is also a matter of concern and people are focusing on it. They’ve started to understand that the necessity of mental health treatment cannot be denied anymore. That’s why insurance companies have started covering the cost of mental health treatments besides physical health treatments. 

You’ll find many insurance companies that are covering the total cost of mental health treatments. A lot of companies are bearing the cost partially. It depends on the company policy.

So, if you ask the question, you won’t get a specific answer. Some companies do it, some don’t. Also, some cover it partially, not fully. 

If you want to know the policy of your insurance company, contact them directly. They’ll help you with the information and the related issues. If you don’t have any insurance and want to do one, make sure that it covers the mental health treatment costs. This is very important.

Benefits of Dialectical Behavior Therapy

Dialectical Behavior Therapy is a long-term process that brings a lot of changes in peoples’ minds. Positive changes make them more aware of their emotions and expressions of emotions. Below are some of the benefits that DBT provides to clients. 

  • DBT helps to learn the ways to accept the circumstances, events, and issues. 
  • It develops skills that help to change responses towards emotions and bring behavior change. 
  • It creates an understanding of destructive behavioral patterns and the ways to modify those.
  • It helps to change the behaviors and beliefs that are not helpful or effective.
  • It helps to learn effective communication with people. 
  • DBT teaches how to work in a group.
  • It helps to find out the strengths and teaches to utilize those skills.
  • It teaches new skills that help them in regular life.
  • DBT reduces self-harming behavior.
  • It elevates self-respect and self-esteem.
  • It improves the quality of life.
  • It reduces the symptoms of trauma and anxiety.

These are the main benefits that clients receive from DBT. As it teaches the patients to accept what happens and behave accordingly by controlling emotion, a lot of positive change is seen in the behavior and action of them.

Dialectical Behavior Therapy vs. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy 

Though DBT is a modified part of CBT, these two have some significant differences. To understand DBT properly, knowing the core differences between DBT and CBT is important. So, let’s take a look at those. 

Philosophy

CBT and DBT are different in their philosophies. CBT focuses more on the rationality of thinking and reasoning. It helps the clients to look at their issues from a logical point of view that they don’t typically do. CBT is about being a more rational and critical thinker. 

On the other hand, DBT focuses on mindfulness. It teaches the clients to accept everything that happens without being affected emotionally. It helps to accept the pain because it is a fact that pain is a part of life. It says- as pain is a part of life, accept those instead of trying to change what happens. 

Treatment Methods

While treating, the main focus of CBT is the rational part of the mind. CBT treats in a way so that people understand the rationality of their thinking patterns and beliefs. That’s why CBT treatment typically doesn’t have group sessions. You’ll see only individual sessions in CBT.

On the other hand, DBT focuses on making people understand that everything is part of life. It helps them to change their thoughts differently and acquire mindfulness. That’s why, besides individual sessions, DBT includes group sessions in the treatment process. Through experience sharing in this session, people understand that everyone has to face pain and negative situations in life. Group sessions are also helpful for other strategies. 

Time Commitment

If we compare CBT and DBT, DBT needs more time commitment than CBT. A CBT treatment is typically 2 and a half months long. On the other hand, DBT treatment is around 6 months long. Both are calculated by counting 1 session per week. 

The reason is- CBT needs only one-to-one sessions where DBT is much more than just one-to-one sessions. Besides individual sessions, DBT includes group sessions, skill training, communication between sessions, etc. 

Interpersonal Relationships

Relationship with others is not a focus factor in CBT. It may talk about the particular relationship with particular people, but it doesn’t focus on the overall relationship with everyone.

On the other hand, an important part of DBT is working on relationships with others. The reason is, situations that provoke emotion are mainly happen with close people. So, DBT works on the relationship with everyone so that the person focuses to be emotionally stable later. 

Skills Taught

CBT focuses on improving rational thinking skills and some other skills depending on the particular need of the person. On the other hand, DBT comes intending to develop a set of skills. DBT exercises, techniques, and efforts are focused on developing the skillset like mindfulness, tolerance, distracting mind, interpersonal effectiveness, emotional regulation, etc.

So, these are the common difference between CBT and DBT. From the differences, it is seen that- though DBT has roots in CBT, gradually it has transformed itself as an individual method of treating a lot of mental disorders.

What to Expect in DBT Therapy

DBT is very effective in treating some tough disorders, it is true. But that doesn’t mean that this is a magic wand that’ll blow the problems away and recover the person immediately. It is a continuous and long-term process of around 6 months. The patient has to participate sessions once in every week. In many cases, the patient can’t keep concentration for this long time. 

Also, though DBT is very effective in treating issues like borderline personality disorder, post-traumatic stress disorders, and so on, it might not be effective for some other disorders. Schizophrenia and similar issues can’t be treated by DBT effectively. 

Similarly, you can’t expect DBT to be similarly effective for all types of disorders. Some psychological issues can’t be solved by psychotherapy alone. In those cases, only DBT can’t help much.

The effectiveness of DBT also depends highly on the commitment of the person who is being treated. If the person is not mentally and physically committed to such a long process, expecting DBT to heal everything is not going to work. 

Like other psychotherapies, DBT requires the involvement of the person in the process. The person has to be dedicated, motivated, and willing to invest time and energy for recovery. In DBT the patient needs to participate in the process actively to cure the issue. Otherwise, DBT won’t be effective.

Researches have shown a great percentage of people have benefited from DBT therapy and get recovered from the disorder. But that is the result of the overall group. You’ll also find some people there who couldn’t achieve recovery from DBT. This means, there are several cases where DBT has failed. So, you can’t expect CBT to recover fully. There are always some exceptions.

Dialectical Behavior Therapy Worksheets

Just like other types of therapies, Dialectical Behavior Therapy includes different types of worksheets. Below are some of the worksheets that are normally used in DBT. There are a lot more.

Dialectical Behavior Therapy Worksheets

The Wise Mind Worksheet

This is one of the most common worksheets used in DBT. Besides knowing about the worksheet, let’s know a bit about the Wise Mind. According to it, a Wise Mind is a mind that maintains the perfect balance between the Reasonable Mind and the Emotional Mind. A wise mind is a mind that can understand emotions and feelings and respond to those in a balanced and rational way. 

The Wise Mind worksheet comes with space where the clients write an experience and the response to that experience following these three minds. Keeping notes of experiences and responses of three types of minds helps them to understand those minds and the effects of those minds in their life. Also, it helps them to understand how to respond to emotions like a wise mind. 

The function of the Emotion Worksheet

The Function of Emotion Worksheet is a worksheet that allows the patients to identify the functions of emotions they’ve felt in recent times. 

The first portion of the worksheet wants to know some basic things about emotion. The typical questions in this portion are- 

  • What was the prompting event behind the emotion?
  • How did you interpret the event or situation?
  • What was the emotion and how intense it was on a scale of 0 to 100?

In the next portion, some questions are used to point the function(s) of the event. Common questions are-

  • Did the emotion influenced the behavior of the related people, or communicate any message with them? If so, what?
  • Did the emotion motivate you to do something? If so, what?
  • Was it able to give you any information or take you to any conclusion? If so, what?

After answering the questions, the patients can understand how their reactions are connected to the prompting event and how the emotions and reactions affect themselves as well as others. 

Radical Acceptance Worksheet

Radical Acceptance Worksheet focuses on helping the clients to identify and understand a situation or event that they’re refusing or struggling to accept. This worksheet makes the situation understandable through step by step questions or instructions.

At the very first step, the clients write about the situation or event that they can’t accept. 

Then, the second question is about the specific part of the event or situation that is difficult to accept. 

After that, the reality of the situation is discussed by the patients. 

Until this stage, it was all about describing the situation. Now it is time to think. The clients think about the reasons behind the reality of the situation. Doing this helps them to accept the situation or part of the situation easily.

Then, the clients practice accepting the situations and the reality behind those. Practicing acceptance can be done in many ways. How it is done should also be written. 

Typically the worksheet suggests breathing deeply, maintaining an accepting posture, and calming the thought that is fighting with the reality behind the situation. Practicing acceptance skills and focusing on the statement of acceptance help a lot. 

The final step is marking the tolerance of the event on a scale of 0 to 10. Here, 0 represents not accepting the situation and 10 represents the total acceptance of it. 

Primary and Secondary Emotion Worksheet

This starts with a flow chart that helps to identify the emotions that the clients are feeling. It classifies the emotions in primary and secondary emotions. And then it tells to how to respond to that emotion. 

At first, the patients answer 1-2 questions about an emotion or feeling- Does it fit the facts? Is it suitable in its level of intensity?

When the answer is positive, it is a primary emotion. In such case, one of the below things can be done-

  • Following the emotion and act on that
  • Using mindfulness to control the emotion
  • Accepting the situation and other related consequences without complaining

When the answer is negative, it is a secondary emotion. In the case of secondary emotion, the worksheet suggests doing the below things-

  • Alter the thoughts so that the emotion fits the facts
  • Engage themselves in the opposite action
  • Focus on problem-solving

The next section of the worksheet contains space for writing the facts in which the emotions fit and the opposite actions that can be taken. 

The first part of this portion is to note the facts in which the emotion is appropriate. It helps them to understand the right situations to show those emotions. The remaining part is for listing the opposite actions which could be taken to control or alter the emotion. 

This worksheet is a bit complex. But once it is done, it is easy to follow.

Best Dialectical Behavior Therapy Books

There are several books you’ll find in the market that can help you to get more deep knowledge about Dialectical Behavior Therapy. As a curious reader, a therapist, or a client, if you’re interested in DBT, you can have one. Those books come with deeper knowledge, examples, techniques, and worksheets.

Best Dialectical Behavior Therapy Books

For you, here in this article, I’m going to talk about a few books that are known for providing deep knowledge about DBT. These books are popular among people who like to deep dive in the ocean of DBT. Without any more bragging, let’s know about those books.

1. DBT Made Simple: A Step-by-Step Guide to Dialectical Behavior Therapy by Sheri Van Dijk

This is a book written for therapists and mental health professionals. It is intended to help them to learn more about DBT and how to effectively apply DBT techniques to the clients. 

It includes almost everything about DBT. Starting from the beginning of DBT, you’ll find the researches and results about DBT, four skill modules explained, case examples, hand-outs, sample therapy dialogs, and so on. Though it is designed for therapists and professionals, it is also able to meet the demand of learning of a curious reader. 

So, even if you’re not a therapist or professional, you can check this out. 

2. The Mindfulness Solution for Intense Emotions: Take Control of Borderline Personality Disorder with DBT by Cedar R. Koons and Marsha M. Linehan

This book is mainly written for individuals who want to take care of their mental health using DBT. It helps people to gather knowledge about controlling mental disorders. Even if you don’t have any, you can try this book to know insights into the minds of people. 

This book focuses on developing seven powerful skills which are directly related to emotion regulation and mindfulness. By teaching those skills, it helps the readers to fight Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD), depression, and other issues related to emotion regulation. 

Therapists and professionals can suggest this book to their clients so that they can help themselves to make the therapy fast and effective.

3. The Dialectical Behavior Therapy Skills Workbook by Matthew McKay, Jeffrey C. Wood, and Jeffrey Brantley

For self-help regarding DBT, this is an excellent book that individuals can use. Also, therapists and professionals can suggest this book to their clients. 

It starts with the detailed idea about Dialectical Behavior Therapy and how this can help to fix disorders related to emotion. After providing a thorough idea about DBT, it takes the reader through introductory exercises. Besides, it comes with more advanced skills and exercises. In a word, it makes people understand DBT and takes through the exercises step by step.

This book has a great impression. So, if you want to try to fix your emotional issues, you can get one for yourself. Having a strong belief in yourself and this book- these two can be enough to get rid of the issues you’re facing. 

4. Calming the Emotional Storm: Using Dialectical Behavior Therapy Skills to Manage Your Emotions and Balance Your Life by Sheri Van Dijk

The fourth on the list is another self-help book that can be beneficial for individuals who want to help themselves to get rid of emotional issues. It helps to learn DBT skills so that the overall life of the reader becomes improved. 

Sheri Van Dijk has written this book so that people can learn DBT skills through a step-by-step process. After completing this book and the exercises properly, the reader will be able to control their emotion in different situations. It promises to make unwanted fears and thoughts vanished and bring balance in life. 

If you’re looking for a book with such promise, you can try this. Self-help is a tough process, but this book can make it easier for you.

Dialectical Behavior Therapy for OCD

OCD stands for Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder which is a mental condition that causes obsession (unwanted thoughts or feelings) and compulsion (urge to do something again and again). There can be only one from these two or both these two. 

Dealing with OCD requires acceptance and mindfulness. That’s what DBT teaches the clients. As a result, they feel less shame for their actions and feelings. This might seem like a common validation, but it is done to make them aware of the improvements and lacking in the process.

Researches have shown that DBT is an effective tool that improves self-control and reduces hopelessness. 

Applying DBT Skills to OCD

Distress Tolerance: Tolerance skills help the clients to distract their minds or focus on other things to tolerate the unwanted situation that leads to emotional and behavioral problems.

Emotional Regulation: Emotional regulation allows the clients to have control over their emotions. It helps to understand that the feelings like anxiety are not for the long term. With time, it’ll change. 

Interpersonal Effectiveness: The specific skill sets learnt in this phase are directly related to the communication and interaction skills of an individual. In treating OCD, this is an important part because obsession and compulsion are connected to the interaction between the clients and people around them. 

Mindfulness: Being mindful means leaving the distressing issues in the past because accidents and negatives can happen at any time. As it is a part of life, spending time on something that is gone is not worthy. The skills of mindfulness help people to develop an accepting mindset and look at the good pictures only. 

Treating OCD with the help of DBT is common in the field of psychology. However, to get an effective result, a healthy relationship between the therapist and the patient, willingness of the patient, and expertise of the therapist are necessary.

Dialectical Behavior Therapy for Binge Eating Disorder

Binge Eating Disorder is mostly caused by different negative mental states like sadness, anger, frustration, and loneliness. So, it is possible to cure this problem with the help of Dialectical Behavior Therapy. 

When binge eating works as the only way of escaping from the negative emotions according to the patients, DBT provides them better coping strategies that work as escapes. Thus it gradually reduces the need for food as an escape. With time, the binge eating habit goes away. 

DBT uses some techniques for treating binge eating disorders. Below are some of those-

Dialectical Abstinence

Dialectical abstinence is a technique where the therapist asks the commitment of the patient to not attempt to binge eating again. Also, the commitment of focusing on the prevention strategies is taken. 

However, it is common that the patient won’t stick to the commitment. There are a lot of reasons behind this. 

Still, commitment is essential just to make sure that the patient is strongly willing to stop binge eating. When this doesn’t work, more effective strategies are taken to make them avoid the issue of binge eating. Dialectical abstinence is just a primary step towards stopping the habit of binge eating. 

While doing it, the therapist should keep in mind that this might not work. Still, emphasis should be given to this because it is the very first stage where the patient expresses the willingness to avoid binge eating.

Diary Cards

A Diary card is a process of self-monitoring. The clients monitor and note their thoughts, behaviors, and feelings which are associated with food. 

When someone learns about the eating experience consciously, it becomes easier to challenge the eating disorders like binge eating. Below are the things that the clients keep note of in the diary cards-

  • Rating of the desire to binge 
  • The number of binge eating episodes
  • The number of unconsciously eating episodes
  • Indirectly relevant behaviors. These are the behaviors that are not directly related to binge eating but leads to behaviors that are directly related to eating disorders.
  • Number of capitulation happens
  • Level of unconscious attraction to foods

Depending on the therapist, the questions may vary. 

Burning Bridges

This is the technique where the clients decide from the core of their heart that they are not going to binge eat, abuse with food, or mindlessly eat again. For this, they make sure that they’re not avoiding the facts related to binge eating. 

This is basically a technique where the people who binge eat consciously challenge binge eating. They focus on the reasons behind binge eating and cut those by accepting those as reality. Accepting the facts ensures that the related behavioral facts are also changed. 

Thus, in the burning bridges technique, the patients cut the reasons related to binge eating. When there are fewer reasons behind binge eating, leaving it becomes easier and more effective. 

Urge Surfing

Urge surfing is an interesting and one of the core components of Dialectical Behavior Therapy. It asks to ‘ride the wave’ of an urge instead of acting according to what it wants. 

The urge is like a wave. It starts, rises, reaches the highest point, and then falls. On the urge surfing technique, the therapist asks the client to feel the ups and downs of the urge and imagine that he is also riding the wave of urge. There is no need to fight the urge or response towards the behavior caused by it. 

Binge eating typically happens as a response to an urge. The patients eat something as a response to an urge which signals the brain that only eating can help to calm the urge. As a result, whenever the urge repeats, the brain sends signals saying that there is nothing to do except eating. 

Urge surfing asks the patients to wait for the urge to end. Typically an urge stays for around 20-30 minutes. In this method, the patient surfs the flow of the urge instead of responding to it. 

Alternative Rebellion

Alternative rebellion is kind of the opposite to urge surfing. Where urge surfing tells to have patience and enjoy the ups and downs of an urge, alternative rebellion asks to satisfy the urge in an alternative way that doesn’t harm anyone. 

Typically, binge eating happens as a response to an urge. Alternative rebellion asks the patients to do something else to satisfy the urge instead of eating. The action should be rebellious to satisfy the urge. But, that can’t be something that causes any harm to anyone. 

The therapists may help the clients to find out the rebellious activity to satisfy the urge or the clients can do it by themselves. There could be multiple acts from which the patient can choose any depending on the situation and ability to satisfy the urge. 

The main aim of alternative rebellion is to replace the habit of binge eating with something that doesn’t harm the patient as binge eating does. It is another effective technique because it is designed to satisfy the urge. 

DBT is one of the most effective ways of treating binge eating disorders. According to different studies, around 56% of people have stopped binge eating after being treated by DBT. In this case, relapse is not that significant.

Some Dialectical Behavior Therapy Centers near You

After reaching here, if you think that DBT can help you and start searching- ‘Dialectical Behavior Therapy near me’ in Google, wait for a minute. Here in this part, I’m going to talk about a few DBT centers around the USA which we think are some of the bests. 

If you’re someone from the following locations- Long Island, Kansas City, Louisville, New Jersey, Knoxville, St Louis, and California, keep reading. We’ve talked about one DBT center from each of these locations which we think are good places to go for DBT treatment. Check those out.

Dialectical Behavior Therapy Long Island

Cognitive Behavioral Associates is a place in Long Island that provides effective Dialectical Behavior Therapy that helps the clients to change their lives towards positivity. They follow an approach that focuses on the needs of the clients and works according to that. 

They provide CBT for people of all ages- from children to adults. Their treatment process also includes family therapy which ensures better and faster effectiveness. Besides personal problems like- mood disorder, panic disorder, stress management, and so on, they treat family issues like relationship problems, family conflicts, and similars. They also have the facility to treat kids for problems like school avoidance, habit disorders, etc. 

DBT typically focuses on personal and group sessions. Besides these, they have included several other types of sessions like family sessions, parent training, etc. These stimulate the treatment to be more effective and efficient. Besides treatment, they suggest resources like books and websites that can help them to recover faster. 

They are focused on ensuring 3 Cs- Compassionate, Customized, and Cutting-edge treatment. By ensuring these 3 Cs, they provide treatment that works. As a result, they have a pleasant success rate. Within a long time of more than 18 years, they’ve successfully treated a lot of clients.

The team of Cognitive Behavioral Associates consists of a number of experienced and trained experts. So, when you visit them, you’re in safe hands. They are eager to help you with the issue you’re suffering from. 

Use the phone number 516-858-4328 to contact them. Also, you can them reach through e-mail. Send an e-mail at info@cbtreatment.com. To know more about them, visit their website- https://cbtreatment.org/

Dialectical Behavior Therapy Kansas City

Lilac Center is the place in Kansas City where you can go for Dialectical Behavior Therapy. Through their calm and friendly approach, they help the clients to learn mindfulness and use that in practical life. Thus the clients become able to control their emotions and focus on improving relationships with people around them. 

They’ve designed their program for people of different age groups and mental health. For example- they have DBT programs for adolescents, young adults, and adults. These programs focus on common issues that people from each specific age group may face. Also, they have programs for improving the relationship between couples, the connection among family members, and the child-parent relationship. 

Also, they have problem-specific programs too. For example- programs for depression, anxiety, addiction, etc. No matter under which program you’re being treated, they do their best to ensure the effectiveness of the DBT treatment they’re providing. They ensure friendly, comfortable, and dependable one-on-one therapy sessions to treat the clients.

They have a number of professionals and experts in their team. All of them are working in this field for a long time. With the help of the long experience they’ve gathered and the latest and most effective inventions in this field, they help the clients. 

Besides the treatment and medications, they also provide supporting resources like books, magazines, and websites so that the clients can also help themselves if they’re interested. DBT books are good sources of knowledge and self-treatment. They utilize those books. 

If you want to know more about them, please visit their website- https://www.lilaccenter.org/. Call them directly at 816-221-0305 (ext. 111) if you want. You can also leave a message through their website.

Dialectical Behavior Therapy Louisville KY

For Dialectical Behavior Therapy in Louisville, Shelby Counselling Associates is a place where you can go. Through a compassionate and friendly approach, the therapists here work for the wellness of the clients. They are focused on the improvement of the client more than anything else. That’s why they have a good record in treating with DBT.

They have different group therapies for teens and adults where they help to learn mindfulness and other strategies of DBT. Besides they help to effectively use the skills and strategies in practical life so that they can get rid of the issues they’re facing. They help to accept reality and survive on that. This helps the clients to see things from a different perspective and accept those.

The team of experienced and professional therapists is the best thing about this place. In the team, you’ll find professional therapists who know what they’re doing. They understand the needs of the clients and direct the treatment process according to that need. As a result, the patients receive exactly what they need. This ensures faster and more effective results.

The place and environment are designed to seem homely. The confidential and comfortable setting helps the clients to express their inner feelings comfortably. This helps the therapists to know how to treat the clients and what they need. A cozy and comfy environment is always helpful for DBT. They have it in their place.

If you’re interested to know more about this place, take a look at their website – https://www.shelbycounselingassociates.com/. If you want, you can call them directly using the phone number- 502-254-8880. You can also contact them using the contact form on their website.

Dialectical Behavior Therapy New Jersey

DBT Center of NJ is the place where you can go for Dialectical Behavior Therapy if you live in New Jersey. Here you’ll meet some professional therapists who can help you with the issues you’re facing. This place has a complete team of professional and expert therapists who follows a friendly and compassionate approach to treat the clients. 

The therapists you’ll meet here are working in this field for a long time. So, they can understand which approach will work for the clients. They have a long experience of private practice as well as working in DBT treatment centers. With their experience of handling a lot of different types of clients, they can help you with your issue.

With a motto- build a life worth living, this place focuses on helping clients to improve their way of living, quality of relationships, and approach towards different life events. This place helps the clients to learn the core strategies of DBT through innovative and effective ways. As a result, the clients learn to accept the reality and enjoy living their life to the fullest.

They have different group therapy settings for different age groups. Adolescents, young adults, and adults- these are the three main age groups they have for group therapy. Also, they have family therapy and multi-family therapy. 

Also, they have group therapies for substance use disorder, emotional eating habits, etc. Under the supervision of experienced therapists, these sessions have an influence on the behaviors of the clients. 

If you want to get help from them, call for a booking- 609-538-9300. You can also leave an e-mail if you’re not comfortable with a call. Use the e-mail address- rbobchin@verizon.net. Want to know more about them? Check their website- https://dbtcenterofnj.com/

Dialectical Behavior Therapy Knoxville TN

If you’re in Knoxville and looking for a Dialectical Behavior Therapy specialist, you can contact Knoxville Counselling Services. KCS has two separate locations with a number of trained and experienced DBT therapists. With specialties of treating people from different age groups, the therapists know how to treat the clients and what leads to an effective DBT treatment.

Visiting their website, you’ll see the specialties of the therapists and book appointments according to that. Some of them are really good with children where some others are specialists in treating teens or adults. So, I suggest checking their website before you make a booking. 

In this place, you’ll find both individual and group therapies. Besides treating different age-based issues, they also treat relationship and marriage issues. They provide family therapy which helps the members of a family to build a strong connection among them and maintain a healthy relationship. Anxiety, low self-esteem, depression, etc. are also treated here under the supervision of specialists. 

For direct in-person sessions, they have offices that ensure a cozy and comfy environment. It helps the patients to be comfortable while taking and express themselves properly in front of the therapists. Besides in-person sessions, they also provide video-based sessions. If you prefer video-based sessions, you can talk to your therapist about this. 

To check the wide varieties of services they provide and the therapists who serve the clients, you can go through their website- https://www.knoxvillecounselingservices.com/. You can directly book a schedule from the contact us page of the site. Otherwise, you can leave an e-mail at info@knoxvillecounselingservices.com.

Dialectical Behavior Therapy St Louis

For high-quality mental health services and Dialectical Behavior Therapy in St Louis, you can go to Sparlin Mental Health. They empower the clients to lead a quality life using their evidence-based approaches. They’ve started in 2009 with an aim of increasing the availability of quality mental health services to the people who need those the most. 

You’ll find experienced and trained mental health professionals and therapists in their team. All of them are focusing on one goal- ensuring effectiveness through a client-centric and evidence-based approach. That’s why, they listen to the clients, design approaches for individuals, and take the clients through the process with a caring and compassionate approach. 

This place treats depression, trauma, anxiety, borderline personality disorder, emotional intensity, etc. Besides, you’ll find treatments for issues like self-harm and suicidal thoughts. They also treat family and relationship difficulties that many people face. They treat people from different age groups, no matter the client is an adult, teen, or child. 

The DBT specialists here follow a compassionate and friendly approach to help the clients learn the DBT skills and utilize those in daily life. Thus, they slowly bring them out of the issues they’re facing in their everyday life. This leads to a drastic reduction in suicidal thoughts and other behavioral issues. In this way, they help clients to come back to a life worth living.

Visit their website https://sparlinmentalhealth.com/ if you want more information about them. Or you can directly call them to book your schedule at 314-531-1155. Also, you can reach them through the contact page of their website.

Dialectical Behavior Therapy California

When you’re looking for a Dialectical Behavior Therapy place in California, DBT California is the place to go. This place provides DBT treatment using techniques that work. Here you’ll find all the components of DBT- individual therapy, skill training in groups, weekly consultation, in between consultations, etc. This place is focused on ensuring a complete and effective treatment that helps the clients to get rid of the issues quickly.

The team of DBT California is made of award-winning therapists and scholars. They are dedicated to what they do. With the experience and skills, they’ve gathered in their long-time presence in this field, they help the clients to improve their quality of life. They stay updated with the researches and findings in this field and regularly look for improving their skills. CBT California team comes with an aim of helping the clients with their best effort.

Besides treating issues like depression, anxiety, borderline personality disorder, eating disorder, etc. CBT California also focuses on supporting age groups with the issues they face for the age. For adolescents, teens, and adults, they’ve designed different DBT programs. Their DBT programs include family sessions which help the families to learn to help the clients from their end. Overall, the programs from this place are effective, fast, and client-oriented.

Their facility is made to be friendly and comfortable where the clients can talk their minds without any issues. The therapists seat and talk together on a regular basis which helps them to understand the situation of the clients better. That’s why we suggest this place for DBT if you’re in California.

Want to know more about them? Check their website https://dbtcalifornia.com/. For booking, call them directly at 800-624-1475. Also, you can send them an e-mail directly from the contact form on their website.

Final Verdict

Here in this article, we have tried to talk about Dialectical Behavior Therapy in as detail as possible. Also, we’ve suggested some places for DBT treatment. DBT is actually a huge field. This article is not enough to teach you DBT in detail. We’ve tried to give you a basic understanding of it. We hope that this article has helped you to know about DBT. 

To know more, you can go through other resources available on the internet. Also, you can get one of the DBT books that we’ve suggested in this article. 

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