Dialectical Behavioural Therapy

What is Dialectical Behavioural Therapy?

Dialectical Behavioural Therapy (DBT) – a branch of CBT – is a highly effective form of therapy designed to help individuals manage intense emotions and improve relationships. DBT combines cognitive-behavioral techniques with mindfulness practices to help you build skills in four key areas: emotional regulation, distress tolerance, interpersonal effectiveness, and mindfulness. In sessions utilizing DBT, you’ll work closely with your therapist to learn how to manage emotional crises, navigate conflicts, and cultivate a greater sense of peace and balance in your life. 

Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) is a highly effective therapeutic approach specifically designed to treat individuals with severe emotional and behavioral issues.


Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) is a specialized form of cognitive-behavioral therapy designed to help individuals manage intense emotions and improve interpersonal relationships. It is particularly effective in treating the following conditions:

Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD)

DBT is specifically designed to treat BPD, addressing issues such as emotional dysregulation, impulsive behaviors, and unstable relationships.

Emotional Dysregulation

DBT helps individuals who struggle with managing intense and rapidly changing emotions, providing skills for better emotional control.

Self-Harm and Suicidal Behaviors

DBT is effective in reducing self-harming behaviors and suicidal ideation, offering coping mechanisms and crisis management strategies.

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

DBT helps individuals with PTSD by teaching skills to manage distressing emotions and reduce trauma-related symptoms

Addiction and Substance Use

DBT addresses substance abuse by helping individuals develop healthier coping mechanisms and reduce reliance on substances.

Eating Disorders

DBT is effective in treating disorders such as anorexia, bulimia, and binge eating by addressing underlying emotional issues and promoting healthier behaviors.


DBT can be used to treat depression, especially in individuals who have not responded well to other forms of therapy, by addressing emotional regulation and interpersonal issues.


DBT helps manage anxiety by teaching mindfulness, distress tolerance, and emotion regulation skills to reduce anxiety symptoms.

Bipolar Disorder

DBT assists individuals with bipolar disorder in managing mood swings and improving emotional stability and interpersonal relationships.

The DBT Process

1. Pre-Treatment: Orientation and Commitment

Before starting formal therapy, clients undergo a pre-treatment phase where they learn about DBT, its principles, and what to expect from the therapy. This phase is crucial for building motivation and commitment to the therapy process. Clients set goals and agree to adhere to the treatment plan.

2. Skills Training

Skills training is typically conducted in a group setting, where clients learn and practice core DBT skills. These skills are divided into four modules:

  • Mindfulness: Enhancing awareness and presence in the moment.
  • Distress Tolerance: Developing strategies to tolerate and survive crises without making them worse.
  • Emotion Regulation: Learning to understand, manage, and change intense emotions.
  • Interpersonal Effectiveness: Improving communication and relationship skills.
3. Individual Therapy

Clients attend weekly one-on-one sessions with a DBT-trained therapist. These sessions focus on applying DBT skills to real-life situations, addressing individual challenges, and reinforcing the skills learned in group training. The therapist helps the client stay motivated and committed to the therapy process.

4. Phone Coaching

DBT provides phone coaching as a way for clients to receive support between sessions. Clients can call their therapist for help with applying DBT skills in real-time situations, especially during crises. This ensures that clients have access to immediate assistance when they need it most.

5. Therapist Consultation Team

Therapists who provide DBT participate in a consultation team, which is a group of DBT providers who meet regularly to support each other in delivering effective treatment. This step ensures that therapists remain competent, motivated, and adhere to DBT principles, ultimately benefiting their clients.

6. Ongoing Assessment and Adaptation

Throughout the therapy process, progress is continuously monitored and assessed. Clients and therapists work together to review goals, track improvements, and make necessary adjustments to the treatment plan. This step ensures that the therapy remains relevant and effective in addressing the client’s evolving needs.

The DBT process is a comprehensive and structured approach designed to help individuals develop the skills they need to manage their emotions and improve their lives. By following these six steps, clients can achieve greater emotional stability, better relationships, and a higher quality of life.

Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) is a structured and comprehensive treatment that typically includes individual therapy, group skills training, and support for the therapist.

Learn More About The Process

If you often feel overwhelmed by your emotions or struggle with relationships, DBT can provide helpful tools and cognitive resources you need to make meaningful, lasting changes.

Book a free consultation today to see how DBT can help you achieve emotional well-being and healthier connections with others!

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