Dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT) is a modified form of cognitive behavioral therapy. Originally developed as a treatment for Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD), its use has since expanded to include several other mental health issues. A dialectical behavior therapy program can be useful as part of a treatment plan for a variety of mental health issues, including anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, PTSD, and substance abuse or addiction.
DBT is also an important facet of our treatment programs at the Atlanta Center for Mental Health. If you are struggling with suicidal ideation or other self-destructive behaviors due to mental illness, a DBT program could help change those negative thought patterns. Call Atlanta Center for Mental Health at 833.625.0458 to learn how dialectical behavior therapy can help you.
How Does Dialectical Behavioral Therapy Work?
DBT primarily deals with regulating emotions and stopping extreme self-destructive behavior, such as self-harm or suicide. To do this, your therapist works with seemingly opposing一or dialectical一strategies. These are encouraging self-acceptance and efforts to change.
The key skills of a dialectical behavior therapy program are generally considered to be:
- Emotional regulation – Emotional regulation lets you navigate, identify, and adjust your emotional responses. In time this will help alleviate extreme emotions and reinforce positive ones.
- Distress tolerance – Building distress tolerance helps you cope with emotional pain or distressing situations without turning to self-injury or impulsive action.
- Mindfulness – Mindfulness focuses on living in the moment and becoming more actively aware of the thoughts and feelings of yourself and others without any judgment.
- Interpersonal effectiveness – You will learn to be more assertive about your needs, set boundaries in relationships, and navigate conflict, all while maintaining positive relationships.
At Atlanta Center for Mental Health, you will learn these skills in concert with other mental health therapies in both group therapy and individual therapy sessions.
Benefits of DBT for Your Mental Health
DBT focuses on validating the client’s experiences and encouraging self-acceptance, all while pushing clients towards self-improvement. This proactive approach to mental health leaves clients with the skills needed to control destructive thoughts and emotions, improve relationships, improve self-perception, and better manage stress.
Controlling Destructive Thoughts or Actions
Throughout your treatment, you will learn to analyze your thoughts and behavior patterns, identify destructive or unhelpful patterns and replace them with healthy ones. If you struggle with self-destructive tendencies or have trouble regulating your emotions, learning to do this is a foundational part of living a happier and healthier life.
Mental health challenges can be an alienating experience, so high-quality mental health therapy will focus on improving your support network. DBT works to improve your relationships with others by fostering healthy boundaries, increased trust, and positive patterns of communication. These relationships can, in turn, help you navigate the complexities of living with mental illness.
In DBT, you will be encouraged to recognize and affirm your strengths and develop your weaknesses. Through a concerted effort of self-improvement and positive support, you will counter the negative self-perception that often accompanies mental health struggles.
In DBT, you will build skills that allow you to effectively manage the stresses of daily life. For people struggling with suicide, self-harm, or risky behavior, part of the issue they face is the inability to manage the stress of daily life and mental illness. DBT will allow clients to improve their quality of life, accept stressors as they enter their life, and manage them through positive coping mechanisms.
Learn More about Mental Health Therapies at Atlanta Center for Mental Health
If you are struggling with mental illness and self-destructive tendencies that have been detrimental to your life and health, you could likely benefit from DBT. At Atlanta Center for Mental Health, our staff of psychological professionals is experienced in a variety of mental health therapies, including DBT. DBT could be a part of your individualized treatment plan in a variety of our programs, including our:
- Dual diagnosis treatment program
- Anxiety treatment program
- Bipolar treatment program
- Depression treatment program
- PTSD treatment program
To learn more about how a dialectical behavior therapy program could help you along the road to recovery, call 833.625.0458 or fill out our online contact form today.