Dialectical Behavior Therapy

At Columbus Behavioral Center, we provide Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT). DBT, developed by Marsha Linehan, Ph.D at the University of Washington, has been shown to significantly reduce para-suicidal behaviors such as cutting, suicide attempts and in-patient stays. Clients are more likely to begin and complete treatment with DBT than with traditional treatment programs, which leads to more sustained behavioral control.

How DBT Works

DBT increases the development of behavioral skills that help residents build relationships, manage emotions, and cope more effectively with various life problems. DBT targets residents’ issues by teaching four primary skill sets:

  • Interpersonal Effectiveness
  • Emotion Regulation
  • Core Mindfulness
  • Distress Tolerance

In each primary area, skills are taught and homework is given to assist youth in learning how to deal with their issues, without resorting to self-defeating behaviors, such as self-mutilation, suicide attempts, substance abuse and sabotaging meaningful relationships. The final and ultimate stage of DBT results in the youth being able to feel freedom and happiness with life.

DBT Program Features

  • Female-focused DBT therapy groups
  • Weekly individual, group and family therapy
  • 12-Step chemical dependency track, including substance abuse group
  • DBT-trained therapist available on-call for residents 24/7
  • Nutrition screening and plan compiled by a licensed dietician
  • Psychological and neuropsychological testing provided, as needed
  • Community-based recreational outings and activities

Areas DBT is Effective:

  • Mental disorder rated severe or complex
  • History of severe physical, sexual, or emotional maltreatment
  • History of multiple placements
  • Eating Disorders
  • Borderline Tendencies
  • Recent suicide attempt
  • Chemical Dependency

Columbus Behavioral Center’s Dialectical Behavior Therapy program is a 30-90 day intensive residential treatment program created for females, ages 12-18 with self-harming behaviors, borderline features, substance abuse or intense emotional swings, who have not responded positively to prior treatments. Some specific areas of struggle include (but not limited to):

  • Impulsive, para-suicidal (self-harming), and suicidal behaviors
  • Regulating and managing emotions
  • Functioning based on negative thinking
  • Maintaining stable relationships
  • Developing self identity

An Effective Treatment Model

Adolescents with persistent and pervasive emotional dysregulation, who have not been amenable to previous treatment efforts, can often benefit from intense Dialectical Behavior Therapy. DBT treatment was initially developed to treat para-suicidal behaviors associated with Borderline Personality Disorder in adults. It has also resulted in additional mental health benefits for the adolescent population with psychiatric disorders such as mood and anxiety, substance abuse and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.

Family Involvement

It is widely believed and supported that family or guardian involvement plays a key role in the success of the adolescent’s treatment outcome. We believe that the parents/responsible adults in an adolescent’s life are experts about their children and their knowledge must be incorporated into assessment and treatment. We understand that parents need support, education, and skills to relate to their adolescents in more satisfying ways.

DBT Treatment Components

The DBT treatment components include individual DBT therapy, group skill-based therapy, individual skills coaching and family therapy. These groups and treatment components will include:

  • Interpersonal Effectiveness
  • Emotion Regulation
  • Core Mindfulness
  • Distress Tolerance
  • Trauma Group
  • Mindfulness Group
  • Self Harm Group
  • DBT Therapy Group
  • Skills coaching reinforced 24/7
  • Relational Approach
  • Positive Behavior Support

In-depth Assessment and Evaluation

The evaluation includes both short-term and long-term treatment options related to medication, preferred therapy modalities, specifics of family interventions, transitional care planning and formulation of educational recommendations. Parents and guardians are always encouraged to tour the facility and meet with the program therapist before admission.

Length of Stay

To conduct the evaluation and implement the treatment, a minimal length of stay of 30 days is required, with 60 days being optimal. During this time, the team works closely with the adolescent and their family/guardian to develop a collaborative aftercare plan.

Admissions Information

We can accept private insurance, Indiana Medicaid, State placements, Out of State placements, private pay, and Department of Education. To speak with a member of our Admissions team, call 800.562.5213.

Our Team

Dr. Jerad Dalton, Attending Psychiatrist
Manda Collins, Program Therapist

Help is Just a Phone Call Away

We cannot offer diagnosis, counseling or recommendations online, but an Assessment and Referral specialist is available 24 hours/7 days a week at 800.562.5213. If you are currently experiencing an emergency, please dial 911 or go to the nearest emergency room.