What is DBT? DBT Therapy in London by City Psychology
What is DBT? DBT Therapy in London
The basis of DBT is cognitive behavioral therapy. However, in order to meet the requirements of such a complex disorder, fundamental modifications were necessary. The most important differences from conventional cognitive therapy are the emphasis on acceptance and validation of a currently occurring behavior, the focus on behaviors that endanger the therapy, the emphasis on the importance of the therapeutic relationship and the emphasis on dialectical processes (“pros and cons” instead of “either … or”). We provide the best service for dbt therapy in London at City Psychological Services.
Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) was developed by the American psychologist Marsha M. Linehan at Washington State University in Seattle to help people who were previously considered “untreatable”. Patients suffering from severe borderline personality disorders have a profound disorder of emotion regulation. Many of those affected had an extremely high level of suffering and often saw suicide as the only way out.
DBT is primarily based on the assumptions of cognitive behavioral therapy and is now the best researched and established psychotherapy for borderline disorders. Optimally, individual and group therapy offers are combined.
Borderline Personality Disorder
Borderline personality disorder is a mental illness that is difficult to diagnose and treat. The symptoms of the disease are diverse, the transitions from “normal” to “tolerable” to pathological characteristics are fluid. Those affected often ride a “rollercoaster of emotions”. They long for closeness, but on the other hand they really can’t stand closeness. Her emotional instability can manifest itself in impulsive tantrums, self-harm and risky behavior, intense but short-lived relationships, extreme mood swings, and recurrent suicide attempts and threats—all of which should be taken seriously.
TREATMENT GOALSThe core therapeutic strategies of DBT
The DBT is based on a “biosocial emergence model”, “cognitive-behavioural treatment strategies” (“information-processing behavioral treatment strategies) and specific therapeutic “dialectical” (“opposite”) intervention methods (targeted measures to prevent and correct disorders). There are also elements from humanistic therapy methods and from Zen. “The main differences from conventional cognitive therapy are the emphasis on acceptance and validation of a currently occurring behavior, the focus on behaviors that can jeopardize the therapy, the emphasis on the importance of the therapeutic relationship and the emphasis on dialectical processes,” reads the definition of the umbrella organization Dialectical Behavioral Therapy eV “The DBT is characterized by a clear structure, a high degree of application practicability and a cross-school attitude. In skill training, an attempt is also made to offer the patient specific skills for better control – for example, their sometimes enormous states of tension, but also for emotion regulation.
DBT is divided into
- weekly individual therapy
- a weekly skill group
- a supervision group of DBT therapists
The DBT concept is clearly structured, but also exhausting – for both sides. Therefore, the individual goals of the patients and their actual motivation for a treatment that requires a high level of activity from those affected are already formulated during the preparation for the DBT. Skill training, for example, is about learning and improving skills that can help patients to deal better with difficulties and stress in the future.
The therapy phases are designed as follows:
- Therapy phase: Stabilization
- Strategies are conveyed, learned and practiced that are intended to prevent the patient from further harming himself or from prematurely breaking off the therapy. As part of a group therapy (e.g. skill group), various new skills, ie behavior and ways of thinking, are trained.
- Therapy goals:
- – Improving the social-emotional perception of oneself and others
- – Practicing skills for self-control and dealing with crises
- – Cognitive differentiation: relativization and reduction of pronounced dichotomous thinking (black-and-white thinking)
- Therapy phase: dealing with stressful life events
- Stressful experiences, life events and circumstances that have contributed to the formation and maintenance of the symptoms are processed. Only in a second phase of therapy do the stressful life events that have promoted the disorder come to the fore. In contrast to psychoanalytically based therapy, it is not about reliving and working through the traumatic experience, but about being able to accept life with the experience as part of the personal but closed past.
- Therapy phase: transfer – application in everyday life
- The third stage of the DBT is aimed at applying what has been learned in everyday life, increasing self-esteem and developing and implementing personal goals in life.
- – Stress reduction training and emotion control