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Why DBT Is an Effective Way to Treat Addiction

woman talks with therapist about why dbt is an effective way to treat addiction

Drug addiction is a terrifying problem that impacts an ever-growing number of people who suffer from borderline personality disorder as well as addiction. However, a dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) program is here to help. Understanding why DBT is an effective way to treat addiction can help those who suffer from these concerns finally get the help and treatment they need.

How DBT Works

DBT is a type of cognitive-behavioral therapy that is designed to help treat the behavioral problems that occur in people with borderline personality disorder. People with this disorder are marked by unpredictable behaviors, wild mood swings, and difficulty maintaining relationships. Often, they turn to drugs impulsively or to help cure the instability caused by their disorder.

Treatment with DBT is simple: it is designed to help correct problematic behaviors that lead to addiction. A typical DBT treatment program will move you through multiple stages, including:

  • Restoring behavioral control to eliminate life-threatening and harmful behaviors
  • Learning replacement behaviors and coping methods that help begin emotional normalcy
  • Opening up your emotions in order to experience them more fully and properly
  • Settling into dealing with everyday life, including coping with relapses and going to work
  • Restoring a sense of completeness and connection to your life

The latter step is the most important when it comes to regaining a sober lifestyle. People with addictions often turn to drugs to feel the hole in their life that comes with a lack of connection with the world. Obtaining that state will help bring you out of the haze of addiction and back into the light of sobriety.

How DBT Is Used to Treat Addiction

When applied to addiction, DBT is designed to help restore balance to a person’s emotional instability and help eliminate their dependency on drugs. Beyond its effectiveness in treating borderline personality disorder lies the myriad of benefits it offers people who suffer from addiction. A typical DBT program:

  • Carefully decreases drug use
  • Lowers withdrawal symptoms
  • Eliminates cravings and relapse urges
  • Teaches coping behaviors that help
  • Helps increase emotional connections and communication skills
  • Restores emotional balance
  • Gets people to engage in new sober vocational activities

Why DBT Is an Effective Way to Treat Addiction

The effectiveness of DBT may be hard to believe, but it has proven a high level of effectiveness when dealing with borderline personality disorder as well as addiction. Even more surprising is how effective it has been with other problems, such as domestic violence, anxiety, and even eating disorders like bulimia. Although multiple studies have confirmed it, it has left many people wondering why it is so effective.

What is it about this therapy that makes it work so well for such a large number of people? The reason seems to lie in the way that it helps deal with emotional dysfunction. Simply put, problematic and harmful personal behaviors (like addiction) often stem from a deeply rooted emotional problem that can be hard for many people to identify. DBT not only identifies these disorders but helps find active and diverse methods for healing that dysfunction. The keyword there is “active.” People in DBT treatment programs aren’t just meditating and hoping that their problems go away: they are implementing coping methods that will positively change not only their addictive behaviors but behavioral problems that have plagued them for their whole life.

What to Expect in Dialectical Behavior Therapy

Although the exact structure of treatment varies, it usually follows three different modes: individual therapy, skills groups, and aftercare. Individual therapy requires working in-depth with a counselor to identify problematic personal behaviors and the influences behind these behaviors. Daily sessions are often necessary, as this helps you and your counselor assess your behaviors on a regular basis.

Skills groups are often where the brunt of your therapy will take place. Here, you will learn new coping methods and techniques that are designed to help correct the behaviors that contribute to your addiction. It also helps teach you skills such as mindfulness, interpersonal effectiveness, emotional regulation, and distress tolerance. Essentially, you will learn how to better control your emotions and behaviors to achieve a stable and drug-free lifestyle.

Vertava Health Mississippi Specializes in DBT

At our Mississippi drug rehab, DBT is one of our specialties. We hire only the most skilled and caring behavioral therapists in order to help you regain control of your emotions and beat any addiction that is impacting your life. Please contact us at 844.951.1931 to get the help you need in regaining a sober life.