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Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) is a type of evidence-based psychotherapy that emphasizes the psychosocial aspect of treatment. Psychologist Marsha M. Linehan developed DBT in the late 1980s as a means to more effectively treat chronically suicidal individuals diagnosed with borderline personality disorder (BPD). DBT is founded on the principals of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and blends concepts derived from Buddhist meditative practice such as awareness, mindfulness and attentiveness to current situations and emotional experiences. Dialectical behavior therapy remains the only empirically supported treatment for BPD. Since its inception its efficacy has expanded, as evidence has shown DBT to be a successful treatment method for individuals struggling with other mental health conditions.

DBT Format

Dialectical behavior therapy is a multifaceted, rigidly structured therapeutic approach that is conducted in three different therapeutic settings (i.e., weekly individual psychotherapy sessions, weekly DBT skills training group therapy sessions, and as-needed phone coaching) each with distinct goals. Every individual is unique and will require some form of customized treatment plan within the larger DBT program. Dialectical behavior therapy allows participants to engage in individualized and collective treatment by focusing on the four modules of DBT, which are: core mindfulness (focusing skills), distress tolerance (crisis survival skills), emotion regulation (de-escalation skills), and interpersonal effectiveness (social/ relationship skills). Through DBT negative and erroneous thoughts or beliefs that are often the source of emotional turmoil are gradually challenged and subsequently shifted to foster the systematic learning of new emotional coping skills.

DBT Individual Therapy Sessions

Weekly one-on-one sessions are essential in creating a forum for the client to work on his or her own nuanced issues with personalized guidance from his or her clinician. They enable the client to work in a co-creative fashion with his or her mental health clinician to identify prohibitive, damaging, and maladaptive thoughts and behaviors. Through positive reinforcement, individual therapy sessions motivate change and emphasize a client’s strengths, which helps to repair and improve his or her sense of self. They are also focused on enhancing the client’s motivation and practice of applying certain DBT skills to relevant challenges.  

Treatment In Calabasas

Calabasas is a city in California. It is a well-known suburb of Los Angeles, located west of the San Fernando Valley and north of the Santa Monica Mountains. Over the past decade, the city of Calabasas has grown in its reputation for luxury as well as for privacy which makes it a hidden gem for residential living for society’s elite, and one of the most desirable destinations in Los Angeles County. It is also home to a plethora of highly qualified mental health clinicians providing an array of therapeutic services and treatment options. 

The information above is provided for the use of informational purposes only. The above content is not to be substituted for professional advice, diagnosis, or treatment, as in no way is it intended as an attempt to practice medicine, give specific medical advice, including, without limitation, advice concerning the topic of mental health. As such, please do not use any material provided above to disregard professional advice or delay seeking treatment.