Dialectical Behavior Therapy
What is Dialectical Behavior Therapy
Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) provides clients with new skills to manage painful emotions and decrease conflict in relationships. DBT encourages change, but also promotes acceptance.
The term “dialectic” means that two opposite ideas can be correct at the same time. This is helpful for individuals in eating disorder treatment, as most of these clients adopt an “all or nothing view.”
The treatment modality appeals to many as they navigate recovery; they can accept their difficulties and work towards changing them. Individuals learn to avoid either/or thinking (“I’m either recovered or I’m stuck with this eating disorder forever”) which can help them challenge other all-or-none thinking typical of an eating disorder.
DBT specifically focuses on providing therapeutic skills in four key areas:
- Emotional regulation
- Interpersonal effectiveness
- Distress tolerance