Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) was developed by Marsha Linehan in the 1980s and 1990s to help people who struggled with intense emotions and impulsive behaviors, such as substance abuse and self-harm. Since then, it has been used to treat people with a wide variety of mental health conditions and disorders, including borderline personality disorder (BPD), bipolar disorder, and eating disorders like anorexia and bulimia nervosa. Let’s take a look at the different types of disorders that can be treated using DBT.
1) Eating disorders
There are many types of eating disorders. The most common are anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and binge-eating disorder. While eating disorders can be challenging to overcome, cognitive behavioral therapy is one type of treatment that has proven effective for people suffering from eating disorders. It teaches you how to cope with stressful situations in healthy ways so that you have more control over your emotions, which can help reduce unhealthy behaviors. Eating disorders are fairly common among young women, but they also affect men and older people as well. If you think you may be suffering from an eating disorder or another mental health condition, it’s important to seek treatment right away.
2) Substance abuse
According to David Sack, MD, chief executive officer of Elements Behavioral Health and Promises Treatment Centers, there is evidence that dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) can help treat those who struggle with drug and alcohol addiction. There’s actually a lot of data suggesting it can be an effective treatment for substance abuse disorders as well as eating disorders and borderline personality disorder (BPD), he says. A study published in 2007 in Dialectical Behavior Therapy: Theory, Research and Practice showed that individuals who underwent dialectical behavior therapy treatments were more likely to abstain from heroin use than those who received other therapies. Studies also show that DBT may help reduce relapse rates among individuals struggling with drug or alcohol addiction.
3) Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is characterized by unwanted, recurring thoughts (obsessions) and/or repetitive behaviors (compulsions). People with OCD are unable to control these thoughts and actions. It can be hard to function socially or at work if you have OCD, but luckily it’s treatable. Many people experience success after trying dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), a type of talk therapy that focuses on accepting yourself despite your flaws.
4) Bipolar disorder
Bipolar disorder (previously known as manic depression) is a condition in which people experience periods of intense emotional highs (mania or hypomania) and lows (depression). People who suffer from bipolar disorder will experience these two types of mood swings several times throughout their lives. The intense changes in mood, energy, and activity levels cause major disruptions to everyday life. It’s common for people living with bipolar disorder to be hospitalized many times during their lives.
5) Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD)
Individuals who suffer from Borderline Personality Disorder tend to be very impulsive and can often find themselves in dangerous situations. Those suffering from BPD often have trouble controlling their anger and engaging in self-destructive behaviors such as abusing drugs or alcohol, having unsafe sex, cutting themselves, and other forms of self-harm.