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Dialectical Behavior Therapy

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Two people in a dialectical behavior therapy sessionThe cycle of addiction is a function of numerous elements that play out in someone’s life. Genetic aspects, life experiences, unresolved trauma, and emotional and psychological factors play their roles. Professional drug treatment works to break the cycle and maximize long-term outcomes. Many proven forms of addiction therapy work well to help people leave drug use behind. One highly effective treatment is Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT).

Dialectical behavior therapy in Colorado is available in the center-city area of Denver at Mile High Recovery Center. Call 855.796.2102 to speak with someone from our knowledgeable team about our addiction therapy programs in Denver, Colorado.

Dialectical Behavior Therapy in Denver

As a form of behavioral therapy, DBT combines two seemingly opposite things: acceptance and change. You can change your outcomes by accepting what is and then shifting it to something that better enables your well-being. DBT helps with symptoms of suicidality, self-harm, and trauma on their own or as they intersect with substance misuse.

Dialectical behavior therapy in Denver at Mile High Recovery Center is highly effective in treating addiction because it identifies healthier ways of living while providing the skills to do that. In a nutshell, DBT enables you to manage and then shift both hurtful beliefs and risky behaviors.

Dialectical behavior therapy can be used in group therapy and individual counseling. In either case, the therapist is trained to initiate healing processes by focusing on specific touchpoints of DBT.

How Does DBT Work?

Looking at some of DBT’s focus areas, we can understand how they work. DBT focuses on the following when it’s used for mental health treatment.

Mindfulness

The practice of focusing on the present moment is woven throughout this form of addiction therapy. When a mind suffers from the disease of addiction, it often depends on impulse and reactivity to cope with stress or extreme emotions. It can also default to thoughts prompted by fear or anxiety, leading to substance abuse. Mindfulness practices such as meditation and deep breathing quiet the mind, focus thoughts on the here and now—not what is wanted, feared, or expected—and make the steps outlined below possible.

Distress Tolerance

Many people struggling with addiction have difficulty tolerating hardship, upset, and even the unexpected. They may find it challenging to handle distress from situations like the following:

  • Being wrong or criticized
  • Feeling out of control
  • Stressful life situations

Their use of alcohol or drugs may well have begun as a way to cope with such challenges. If they have experienced trauma, they may be mainly triggered by difficulty and stress. Distress tolerance and mindfulness are closely aligned in DBT.

Cognitive and Behavioral Modification

Like cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), DBT focuses on thoughts, beliefs, and expectations to positively affect behaviors. Dialectical behavior therapy seeks to buttress beliefs and expectations that function well for you, are valid, and are not warped by dysfunctional or harmful thoughts. By recognizing which of your thoughts and beliefs about the world and yourself you can trust, your behavior will change to reflect these healthy ways of thinking.

Communication and Relationships

Many people who struggle with addiction find it difficult to express feelings or ask for help. Using drugs or alcohol offers a release for emotions or temporary relief without genuine support. DBT helps you become a confident, effective communicator, enabling you to ask for support while also creating healthy boundaries and meaningful human connections. These outcomes are significant to recovery.

Emotional Regulation

The ability to manage extreme emotional swings helps you avoid reliance on substances to do that for you. Understanding the impact of extreme lows and highs on behavior is the first step to finding equilibrium. Ultimately this might be the most important of the DBT skills.

What Other Approaches to Care Work Well with DBT?

Our dialectical behavior therapy in Denver works well with other evidence-based approaches, including those typically found in addiction treatment programs. Our central location in Denver, CO, makes our programs easily accessible to outpatient clients. Apart from psychotherapy, we also offer the following:

  • Residential treatment
  • Partial hospitalization program (PHP)
  • Intensive outpatient program (IOP)
  • Sober living or recovery housing
  • 12-step program

Our psychotherapy sessions may also use other techniques, such as those of cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT).

Find Dialectical Behavior Therapy in Colorado at Mile High Recovery Center

Learn more about our dialectical behavior therapy treatment. One of our knowledgeable team of professionals would gladly answer any questions you have and help you think about the next steps in your mental health. Contact Mile High Recovery Center today at 855.796.2102 or fill out our online form.