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Adult DBT 

Comprehensive DBT for Adults is an intensive and multifaceted therapeutic approach that is adherent to the original DBT model. We offer the following therapeutic components: Individual Therapy, Skills Training, Between-Sesssion Coaching, Team Consultation and Family Therapy. 

What is Comprehensive DBT? 

Our Comprehensive Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) Program is a multifaceted and evidence-based approach to psychotherapy that was originally developed by Dr. Marsha M. Linehan. Comprehensive DBT is highly structured and intensive, and aims to help individuals build a life worth living and improve their overall well-being. It is well-suited for individuals who struggle with emotional regulation, self-destructive behaviors, and difficulties in interpersonal relationships. 


Like all of the treatments we offer at CWML, an individualized treatment plan is developed for each and every client. Therapists work closely with their clients to identify their unique needs, and develop a plan that addresses their specific concerns. All comprehensive DBT treatment plans include the four essential components of, individual therapy, skills training, between-session coaching and a therapist consultation team and may also include family therapy and medication management. Some of the unique features of DBT therapy include:

Goal Setting: Setting and working toward specific treatment goals is a fundamental part of comprehensive DBT. Clients collaborate with their therapists to identify and prioritize the changes they want to make in their lives.

Behavioral Chain Analysis: Clients and therapists work together to analyze problematic behaviors and develop alternative, more effective responses. In-depth assessments of specific situations and the chain of events leading to problematic behavior are conducted to understand triggers, emotional responses, and consequences.

Homework Practice: Clients are often assigned homework to practice and apply the skills learned in therapy to real-life situations.

Crisis Management: Clients develop a crisis plan to use when they experience intense distress. This plan includes coping strategies and resources to help them manage crises effectively.


Trauma-Informed Care: In situations where individuals have experienced trauma, therapists will incorporate trauma-informed care principles into individual therapy to address trauma-related issues.

DBT Components 


Individual Therapy

DBT clients meet one-on-one with their therapist once or twice weekly. In these sessions, clients work on specific issues they are facing and learn how to utilize skills in their life. Therapy is solution oriented and active. 


Skills Training

Skills are taught in groups or individually. Teaching focuses on four sets of DBT skills: Mindfulness, Emotion Regulation, Distress Tolerance, and Interpersonal Effectiveness. These skills help individuals manage intense emotions, improve relationships, and cope with distressing situations.



Clients have access to coaching between sessions for support in applying the skills they've learned in real-life situations. For some clients the additional support of in-home therapeutic coaching can also be helpful. Coaching helps to reinforce skills use and help clients create a more balanced and fulfilling life.  


Team Consultation

All of the therapists, psychiatrists and therapeutic coaches at CWML participate in a weekly consultation team meeting. These meetings provide support and consultation for our clinicians, to ensure they are effectively implementing DBT principles in their individual and group therapy sessions, and to ensure that we are providing the most coordinated collaborative care possible.


Family Therapy

The overall effectiveness of treatment can often be enhanced by involving the support system of the client. Family therapy can be improve communication, foster understanding and build a home environment that supports and reinforces the use of skills by everyone in the family system 


Medication Management

While not always a component of DBT, medication management may be included when appropriate. Clients work closely with their psychiatrist if medication is part of their treatment plan, and psychiatrists and therapists coordinate care. 

Want to learn more about DBT? 

Reach out for a free 30 minute consultation

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