Detox is only the first stage of most addiction therapy programs. To heal mentally, physically, and emotionally, patients must develop a deep understanding of why they came to rely on drugs or alcohol in the first place. Dialectical behavior therapy provides an evidence-based approach to mindful living, allowing patients to identify and address unmet needs.
At Midwest Center at Youngstown, we offer a dialectical behavioral therapy program as part of our holistic approach to recovery, allowing patients to feel emotionally empowered as they begin to navigate sober living. Call our team today at 844.544.0502 to learn more about our multifaceted approach to total wellness, allowing you to improve virtually every aspect of your life moving forward.
What Is Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)?
Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) is a specific type of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) specifically designed to help individuals regulate challenging emotions. In DBT, therapists validate patients’ emotional responses while assisting patients to evaluate whether their resulting decisions were effective. In this process, the “dialectic” is the tension between acceptance and change, both of which are requirements of lasting growth. In addition, DBT can assist patients in articulating life goals, as well as construct tangible plans of action for achieving them.
In solo or group DBT sessions, patients are introduced to a variety of different methods to help manage negative thoughts and feelings through four main concepts: 1) mindfulness, or the ability to feel more attuned to the moment, 2) distress tolerance, helping patients to come to terms with their current situation, 3) emotional regulation, allowing patients to process powerful emotions more effectively, and 4) interpersonal effectiveness, allowing individuals to be simultaneously more assertive and more empathetic in their interactions with loved ones.
These areas are addressed in a series of successive stages:
- Stage 1: Self-destructive behaviors (particularly self-harm or suicidal behaviors)
- Stage 2: Quality of life skills
- Stage 3: Improved relationship skills
- Stage 4: Self-actualization and the ability to engage joyfully with life
What Are the Benefits of Participating in a Dialectical Behavior Therapy Program?
Much like CBT, DBT is based on affirmative feedback and designed to emphasize positive decision-making (rather than penalize negative choices). Many patients find this a more motivating approach, allowing them to direct their current actions towards larger life goals. It is also a patient-focused process and has proven to be effective across all demographics.
Over time, DBT can assist with:
- Increased mindfulness and awareness of current thoughts and feelings
- Providing tools to cope with stressful emotions
- Decreased anxiety
- Improved personal relationships
- Enhanced ability to make positive decisions and control impulses
- Reduction of the incidence of self-injury
- Heightened self-esteem and self-image
It is also beneficial for patients who experience the following co-occurring disorders and issues:
- Anger management
- Bipolar disorder
- Borderline personality disorder (BPD)
- Disordered eating
- Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD)
- Impulse control problems
- Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Self-harming behavior
- Suicidal ideation
- Survival of sexual trauma or violence
DBT can also be particularly helpful for patients with multiple diagnoses or who have previously struggled with cognitive behavioral therapy. In addition, it is proven to lead to greater overall compliance with recovery protocols and an improved ability to form social connections while in treatment.
Dialectical Behavior Therapy at Midwest Center at Youngstown
To live in ongoing sobriety, you must learn to trust your thoughts and feelings and use those cues as a barometer to discern your actual needs. This is a complicated process. It is entirely possible to navigate a healthier and happier existence through the correct supports. At Midwest Center at Youngstown, Ohio, we tailor treatment plans to capitalize upon each patient’s unique strengths. Call our team today at 844.544.0502 to learn more about how this holistic approach to treatment can change your life.