DBT also addresses other difficulties:

  • Relationship difficulties
  • Intense fears of abandonment and sensitivity to criticism
  • A profound sense of emptiness or emotional numbness
  • Self-defeating behaviors that are impulsive or destructive


DBT is a form cognitive-behavior therapy (CBT) that Marsha Linehan developed over thirty years ago to help people who have extreme difficulty managing their emotions, especially those with self-injury and suicidal behaviors.

However, it has also been proven to be helpful for people with eating disorders, substance abuse issues and those with other difficulties in interpersonal relationships. These individuals often receive a diagnosis of borderline personality disorder (BPD). Skills acquired from using this type of therapy are generally intended to improve the individual’s well-being and quality of life by expanding the person’s skills, abilities, and independence. Standard DBT consists of a combination of both individual therapy and skills training.

DBT is designed to help emotion regulation difficulties such as the following:

  • Painful emotions that are experienced as intolerable
  • Quickly shifting between different emotions and moods
  • Feeling controlled by your emotions
  • Intense self-hatred and shame
  • Prone to irritability and anger