Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) is a cognitive behavioral treatment developed to aid individuals with chronic emotion regulation issues. Both individual psychotherapy and group skills-training classes are provided in order to help people learn and practice new skills and develop a life that they experience as worth living.
DBT skills include topics of mindfulness, emotion regulation, distress tolerance, and interpersonal effectiveness.
Receiving portions of DBT can help some clients meet clinical goals. For example, many people have been taught some of the DBT skills in group programs, or met with a therapist who used DBT techniques. While sampling DBT interventions can be effective for some, a program isn’t considered adherent DBT without all four components being offered simultaneously.
What are the components of a comprehensive DBT program?
Comprehensive DBT has four components that work together to deliver the highest quality.
- Skills-training groups are a vital component of DBT treatment. Weekly 90-minute groups teach clients behavioral skills. Lessons and homework assignments include concrete practice with the four sets of skills, which include Mindfulness, Interpersonal Effectiveness, Emotion Regulation, and Distress Tolerance. These categories of skills help clients target staying aware and present; asserting needs effectively and saying no with self-respect; changing emotional responses; and tolerating and accepting painful situations. CEBTOhio offers separate DBT skills training groups for adult and adolescent clients.
- DBT individual therapy sessions are scheduled weekly and focus on enhancing client motivation, and helping clients to apply the skills taught in group to specific challenges and events in their lives. Individual sessions run concurrently with DBT skills training.
- Telephone coaching is provided for in-the-moment support. The goal is to coach clients on how to effectively use their DBT skills to manage difficult situations in their everyday lives. Clients can call their individual therapist between sessions to receive coaching at the times when they need help the most.
- The DBT consultation team is focused on the people who provide DBT, including individual therapists, skills-training group leaders, case managers, and others who help treat the client or patient. The consultation team provides support, motivation, and targets burn out in DBT providers. Ongoing training is also a vital part of consultation team to ensure continued clinical excellence for members of a treatment team
DBT Prolonged Exposure Therapy
The DBT PE protocol is an adapted version of Prolonged Exposure Therapy, which uses two distinct interventions to treat the cognitive and behavioral avoidance of trauma.
CEBTOhio is proud to offer the DBT PE protocol for clients in need of treatment for PTSD symptoms. Amy Kalasunas, LPCC-S, NCC, has completed the Intensive and Advanced Intensive training in the protocol, and regularly consults with DBT-PE trained clinicians to maintain the highest standards of fidelity to the model.