Dialectical Behavior Therapy

Dialectical Behavior Therapy

What is Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)?

First introduced in the 1970s, dialectical behavior therapy, also known as DBT, is a special type of therapy that aims to provide positive coping skills in the face of uncomfortable and painful thoughts. The thought behind this assumes that after practicing healthier coping skills, the practice will erode self-defeating thoughts and behavior over time. DBT is successful, but takes a commitment from the patient as well as the provider. Because Rites of Therapy NW is a long-term program, DBT is a perfect therapy to address issues in young adults.


DBT was first developed to treat Borderline Personality Disorder, but is used for many other disorders and problems in modern times. Based on four core concepts, DBT needs a solid therapeutic environment and relationship, is based solely on practices that are non-judgmental, depends heavily on reasoning, which may need to be taught, and distinguishes between effective and non-effective thinking.

DBT also has several phases of treatment. While at Rites of Passage NW, teens will practice mindfulness, interpersonal skills, tolerance, and regulation of emotion.

The benefits and outcomes of dialectical behavior therapy usually include a decline or eradication of harmful and risky behaviors, including suicidal ideation and self-harm, and the decline of behavior that bring about a poor quality of life. These types of behaviors can include self-harm, overeating, drinking, and the use of drugs, but can also include behaviors such as lying and stealing. Each individual teenager possesses individual problems as well as individual attributes. The beauty of DBT is, with the right therapist, the therapy is completely tailored to meet the needs of each child. Because of this, it is a widely successful therapy.