What is Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), and How Can it Help You?


Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) is a type of psychotherapy that can help you manage overwhelming emotions, develop coping skills, and improve your quality of life. DBT was founded in the late 1980s by psychologist Marsha Linehan and, since then, has gained popularity in California and across the country. In this blog post, we will explore what DBT is, how it works, and how it can help you in California.

What is DBT?

DBT is a type of cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) that combines elements of mindfulness, acceptance, and change. DBT aims to help you develop four key skills: Mindfulness, Distress Tolerance, Emotion Regulation, and Interpersonal Effectiveness. Mindfulness helps you stay grounded in the present moment, Distress Tolerance helps you tolerate uncomfortable emotions without making them worse, Emotion Regulation helps you manage difficult emotions, and Interpersonal Effectiveness helps you communicate effectively in your relationships.

How does DBT work?

DBT therapy typically involves weekly individual therapy sessions and weekly group skills training. In individual therapy, you work with a trained therapist who will guide you through the skills and help you apply them to your life. In skills training, you learn and practice the four key skills with a group of other people who are also learning DBT. DBT can also include phone coaching, where you can call your therapist for support in between sessions.

Who can benefit from DBT?

DBT was originally developed to treat borderline personality disorder (BPD), but it can be helpful for many other mental health conditions such as depression, anxiety, trauma, bipolar disorder, and substance use issues. DBT can also be helpful for anyone who wants to learn coping skills and improve their emotional well-being.

Benefits of DBT?

DBT teaches emotional regulation and mindfulness

DBT teaches individuals techniques to regulate their emotions and become more mindful of their thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. Mindfulness is the practice of being present and aware of the moment. This can help individuals regulate their emotions, improve self-awareness, and reduce negative thoughts. With DBT, individuals learn how to manage and better respond to their emotions in a healthy way rather than feeling overwhelmed or out of control.

DBT addresses suicidal ideation and self-harm behavior

DBT was originally developed to treat borderline personality disorder. It is effective in addressing self-harm behavior and suicidal thoughts that often accompany this disorder. However, it has also been proven to help people with other mental health issues, such as depression, anxiety, and PTSD. DBT interventions help individuals learn how to recognize and appropriately deal with emotional triggers.

DBT helps to improve communication and relationships

DBT strongly emphasizes interpersonal communication skills. Not only does it teach individuals to express their needs and desires, but it also teaches active listening skills to promote understanding and compassionate communication. This technique assists in conflict resolution and reduces interpersonal conflicts.

DBT is flexible

DBT is a versatile therapy that can be tailored to the individual’s needs. The therapy can easily incorporate individual or group sessions, as well as other complementary therapies. Some individuals may benefit from additional support such as medication, art therapy, or other programs. A person can be treated in such an individualized, comprehensive way, depending on the needs of the individual.

DBT emphasizes change and acceptance

DBT encourages individuals to accept what they cannot change and focus on what they can. This promotes the building of active coping mechanisms and supportive relationships. The therapy emphasizes change and helps individuals identify possible solutions for future conflict and relationship difficulties.

How can you find a DBT therapist in California?

To find a DBT therapist in California, you can start by asking for a referral from your primary care physician or mental health provider. You can also search online for therapists who specialize in DBT. It’s important to look for a therapist who is trained in DBT and has experience working with your specific mental health condition.

Why choose DBT in California?

California has a vibrant DBT community with many therapists and group programs available. DBT can be especially helpful in California, where stressors such as traffic, high cost of living, and natural disasters can increase emotional distress. DBT can help you develop the skills to manage these stressors and improve your quality of life.

Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) is a powerful therapy that can help you manage overwhelming emotions and improve your quality of life. DBT combines elements of mindfulness, acceptance, and change to help you develop key coping skills. DBT can be helpful for many mental health conditions and can be especially beneficial in California, where stressors can be high. If you are interested in trying DBT, reach out to a trained therapist in California and start your journey toward healing and growth.

About Author

LaDonna Dennis

LaDonna Dennis is the founder and creator of Mom Blog Society. She wears many hats. She is a Homemaker*Blogger*Crafter*Reader*Pinner*Friend*Animal Lover* Former writer of Frost Illustrated and, Cancer...SURVIVOR! LaDonna is happily married to the love of her life, the mother of 3 grown children and "Grams" to 3 grandchildren. She adores animals and has four furbabies: Makia ( a German Shepherd, whose mission in life is to be her attached to her hip) and Hachie, (an OCD Alaskan Malamute, and Akia (An Alaskan Malamute) who is just sweet as can be. And Sassy, a four-month-old German Shepherd who has quickly stolen her heart and become the most precious fur baby of all times. Aside from the humans in her life, LaDonna's fur babies are her world.

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11 months ago

Great article on DBT! It’s an excellent overview of what the therapy is and how it can be beneficial for people struggling with various mental health challenges. I appreciate the clear explanations of the four key components of DBT, as well as the emphasis on the importance of validation and acceptance in the therapy process. The real-life examples also help to illustrate how DBT can be applied in practical settings. Overall, a very informative and useful read for anyone interested in learning more about DBT and how it can help improve mental health and well-being.

Sneha Baurej
Sneha Baurej
10 months ago

Thank you for your experience, it is important that it really helps with various deviations in mental health. But I have an example sometimes I have unexplained panic attacks and panic disorder https://us.calmerry.com/blog/anxiety/panic-attacks-and-panic-disorder/ And I can’t always deal with it and it scares me so I decided to get help specialists.

10 months ago

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9 months ago

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8 months ago

Thank you for sharing your story; it’s critical that it be used to address many mental health problems. Visit https://truetherapy.org/accepted-insurances/ to discover more about it.