Dialectical Behaviour Therapy

What is Dialectical Behavioural Therapy?

Dialectical behaviour therapy (DBT) is one type of cognitive-behavioural therapy. It was developed in late 1980 by Marsha M. Linehan and is used to treat individuals who have chronic suicidal thoughts, suicidal ideation and urges to harm themselves. The condition is sometimes referred to as Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD).

DBT is a highly structured therapeutic approach, It aims to develop acceptance and change-orientated strategies. For instance, in DBT a therapist accepts clients as they are, but at the same time acknowledges that they need to make changes in order to achieve their life-worth-living goals. These help highly suicidal individuals to find a synthesis that enables them to achieve a "life worth living". This concept is fundamental in DBT. Therapy aims to reduce self-destructiveness and therapy-interfering behaviours.

DBT consists of four main modules that teach clients a set of skills to help them manage their intensive emotions. One assumption is that the clients' life is unbearable because their emotions are dysregulated and they lack the self-management strategies that can help them to bring their emotional intensity under control.

The modules are:

  • Distress Tolerance Skills (crisis skills used to reduce the emotional intensity and keep the client safe),

  • Mindfulness (to teach clients to stay in the present moment rather than engage with past experiences or future worries),

  • Interpersonal Effectiveness (that teaches clients to use their communicative skills more effectively) and

  • Emotional Regulation (teaching the management of emotions in a more constructive and effective way).

DBT is well supported by much academic research. It has been demonstrated to be effective in reducing suicidal behaviour, self-harm, substance misuse, eating disorders, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and chronic depression.

What will the DBT process look like?

If you wish to find out more about DBT or are interested in starting treatment, please visit our contact page and leave your details via email, the website, or telephone. We will reply within 24 hours and arrange an assessment within a further 48 hours. This assessment will determine whether DBT is the most suitable therapy for you.

We are now recruiting for an online DBT skills group! 

DBT skills groups are a useful and effective way of learning the four core modules of DBT in a

group setting with other clients. This course will last up to 25 weeks, with each module having to

be paid for in advance. It will be run by Dr Liliya Korallo, an experienced DBT psychologist, and

co-facilitated by senior assistant psychologist Andrew Theophani. 

Within this package, this includes a weekly online DBT skills meeting, most likely after working hours. This meeting would be 1.5 hours and offers the essential DBT information and materials in a friendly and safe group environment. It also includes a separate individual therapy session where we would target your specific unhelpful behaviours and practice skills to reduce these. 

In order to join the DBT online group, please express your interest during the initial assessment. We will then decide whether a group setting would be most beneficial and if so, ask you to sign a contract where we provide more information and ask that you adhere to the group rules. Some of these rules includes the right to confidentiality, to be present and engaged each week in the group therapy, and to not use the service as a crisis hotline or to share unhelpful, triggering behaviours with other clients.


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Skype therapy allows you to receive therapeutic support from the comfort of your own home. This service is ideal for anyone who is not able to have therapy in person frequently, or who has a hectic lifestyle and needs a flexible approach to therapy.