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Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) in NYC

Life in New York City can feel crazy at times, and it’s normal to often feel disconnected from yourself. With Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), you can develop mindfulness and become more in touch with yourself, who you are, and what you want, every day. 

What is Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT)? 

Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) is a form of talk therapy which focuses on mindfulness, and emotion regulation

Dialectical means a combination of opposite ideas. Dialectical thinking is the capability of simultaneously accepting two contrasting viewpoints. With DBT, you learn to live in the present by accepting reality and changing thoughts and behaviors that don’t belong.

What is DBT used to treat?

DBT was originally designed as a type of cognitive behavioral therapy for individuals with complex mental health conditions. In particular, if you are someone who has difficulty managing and regulating emotions, you can benefit highly from DBT. You will learn skills for developing self-acceptance and regulating destructive emotions and behaviors.

DBT is effective for:

  • ADHD
  • Anxiety
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Borderline Personality Disorder
  • Depression
  • Eating disorders
  • PTSD
  • Self-harm
  • Substance use disorder
“I have no real pathology, and I don’t have borderline personality disorder. Can I still benefit from DBT?”

While DBT was developed in the 1970s as a treatment for the “worst of the worst” at the time, everyone can benefit from DBT. The ideas and methods used in DBT were refined over time based on people who had real, real issues. Skills such as mindfulness and emotion regulation can benefit everyone, no matter what your daily life is like.

How does DBT work?

DBT teaches you four core skills:

  1. Emotional regulation
  2. Distress tolerance
  3. Mindfulness
  4. Interpersonal effectiveness

1. Emotional regulation

Sometimes we let our emotions get the best of us. However, with some training, you can learn to manage your emotions and prevent them from going out of control. 

Emotional regulation skills will help you identify and control your primary emotional reactions before they cascade into a series of secondary reactions. For instance, if you are angry, you may be vulnerable to feeling guilty or worthless. By identifying your emotional triggers, you can better control how you react to negative situations. 

Emotional regulation skills give you the ability to:

  • Recognize emotional triggers
  • Reduce vulnerability
  • Increase positive emotions
  • Be more mindful of emotions without judging them
  • Improve problem solving skills

2. Distress Tolerance

We all end up in rough patches from time to time. Distress tolerance skills can help you get through tough times without relying on destructive coping methods. 

For example, when you feel overwhelmed, you may choose to spend some time alone, to deal with your emotions. Self-isolation may or may not help, but does little harm (if it’s just for a short time). In contrast, relying on methods such as self-harm or substance use will cause much more harm. Distress tolerance skills will teach you healthy coping methods.

Distress tolerance skills can help you:

  • Identify ways to improve the present despite difficulty or pain
  • Distract yourself until you are prepared to deal with the situation or emotion
  • Use breathing and meditative techniques to feel more at peace
  • Consider pros and cons of different coping strategies 

3. Mindfulness

Mindfulness teaches you to focus on the present moment, including your thoughts and your senses. By applying this perspective to your daily life, you will be more prepared to deal with any negative situations that come your way. You will be better equipped to make the best out of every situation. 

Mindfulness skills will teach you how to:

  • Balance rational and emotional thoughts
  • Enjoy being in the present
  • Deal with situations where mindfulness may be difficult
  • Give full attention to whatever you’re currently doing
  • Be more aware of everything around you

4. Interpersonal effectiveness

Clear communication with others is critical for building fulfilling relationships. This includes both understanding how others feel and staying true to your own values. Skills such as active listening and assertiveness allow you to take control of your own situations.

DEARMAN, an acronym used to describe interpersonal effectiveness skills

Interpersonal effectiveness skills allow you to: 

  • Effectively communicate to others what you want
  • Resolve conflict and challenges in relationships
  • Have a greater self-respect

Work with an NYC DBT therapist at Integrative Psych

Integrative Psych is an NYC-based private practice specializing in Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) for a range of mental health conditions. Many of our clients are based in Brooklyn, Queens, Manhattan (Chelsea, Village, Lower East Side, Upper East Side, Upper West Side, Tribeca, SoHo), Westchester, and New Jersey, Connecticut, and Florida. 

Integrative Psych takes a compassionate, comprehensive and holistic approach to DBT. We will carefully explore your present life and evaluate how your thoughts and emotions affect your daily life, then work on developing lifelong skills to manage your emotions, communicate effectively, practice healthy coping mechanisms, and remain mindful.

Decisions about the DBT process are made as a team, between you and your therapist. Once you have begun care with us, we will see you regularly to monitor your progress and make any adjustments necessary to ensure that you benefit fully from your DBT at Integrative Psych. 

Obtain DBT therapy in NYC today, if you are ready to:

  • Gain lifelong skills for taking control of your emotions and practicing mindfulness in your daily life
  • Start a journey of improving your mental health
  • Have the support of a trusted professional with extensive experience with DBT

If you’re interested in working with one of our DBT experts, book an appointment here.

FAQ:

Is DBT covered by health insurance?

DBT is considered a standard mental health treatment. While specific coverage and out-of-pocket costs will vary based on the type of health insurance, insurance companies will provide partial or full coverage for DBT carried out by a registered, certified mental health clinician.

What is the success rate of DBT?

The success rate of DBT will vary based on the condition treated. However, it can be highly effective in combination with medication treatment. For example, 3 out of 4 of depressed adults treated with Dialectical Behavior Therapy and medication reported remission after 6 months. In the medication-only group, only 1 out of 3 reported remission after 6 months.

What is the difference between DBT and CBT?

DBT and CBT are similar in many ways, as DBT was developed as a version of CBT. 

DBT focuses on how you perceive yourself and interact with others. DBT utilizes mindfulness techniques to develop self-acceptance and emotion management, which allows you to take control over negative situations in life. 

On the other hand, CBT is more focused on logical thinking. By reframing thought processes, you can develop healthier thoughts and behaviors.

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