Beginner’s Guide To Dialectical Behavior Therapy

Four Dialectical Behavior Therapy Models

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There are four dialectical behavior therapy models therapists routinely use. The first of these is mindfulness, which can take many forms, and all of them involve learning to be present in the current moment without thinking about the past or the future. For example, a patient struggling with an eating disorder might focus on the sensations associated with eating a bite of food. They might try to focus on how the texture of the food feels or observe the sweetness of a piece of fruit.

The second model used in dialectical therapy is known as distress tolerance. This uses the tools of distraction, self-soothing, weighing the pros and cons, and improving the moment to help patients cope with moments of crisis by accepting themselves and the present situation. Interpersonal effectiveness, the third dialectical model, teaches patients to assert themselves and express their needs in a relationship. This technique helps patients to build healthy and positive relationships. The fourth and final dialectical behavior model is emotional regulation, which is a tool that teaches patients to recognize anger, sadness, and other negative emotions. They are then taught coping methods to handle these emotions in a manner that increases their positive emotions and reduces the amount of emotional vulnerability they may experience.

Learn more about when dialectical behavior therapy is used now.

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