Two popular and effective forms of talk therapy are cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) and dialectical behavior therapy (DBT). To understand these addiction treatment programs, compare DBT vs. CBT. Each form of therapy addresses the specific mental health needs of a person based on their diagnosis. In DBT vs. CBT, there are differences and similarities. The more you know about them, the more prepared you will be for finding an appropriate treatment plan. A successful outcome for you or your loved one is possible. 

What is Talk Therapy?

Talk therapy improves a person’s mental health. Mental health care professionals and others also refer to talk therapy in the health care industry as “psychotherapy.” In a confidential talk therapy session, a person talks about their past and current problems. The person will also speak on topics that may include thoughts about relationships, feelings, and experiences. During the session, a trained therapist listens and provides awareness. Talk therapy sessions are flexible in striving to meet the coping skill requirements of one or more participants. Based on the type of therapy, people can receive sessions for individuals and groups, such as families and couples.

Core Principle Differences: CBT vs. DBT

DBT, or dialectical behavior therapy, treats a variety of mental illnesses. The primary diagnosis of a person recommended for DBT is borderline personality disorder (BPD). Within that diagnosis, suicidal tendencies may be present. DBT explores coping with relationships and environments in healthy ways. Since it addresses handling relationships, a weekly group session may be included in DBT treatment. Acceptance of uncomfortable feelings is a core principle goal of DBT sessions. Only after acceptance of feelings can change seem possible. Next, the road to recovery can begin.

By contrast, CBT, or cognitive behavioral therapy, helps a person replace destructive thought patterns and feelings. For instance, low-self esteem is one example of an unhealthy self-belief. CBT treats anxiety, bipolar, schizophrenia, and eating disorders too. Recognizing those negative thought patterns and changing them into positives is the core principle or goal of CBT sessions.

Commonalities of DBT vs. CBT

Which Came First: CBT or DBT?

The broad term for all talk therapies is CBT. Therefore, it came first. Later, the development of DBT began to address the needs of specific types of coping disorders in mental illness (such as BPD).

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Reviewing the differences and similarities of CBT vs. DBT gives you a glimpse of what to expect. Only an evaluation with a trained specialist can accurately direct you to the therapy that will be most effective for you. Take a step forward, and we will meet you at the halfway point. The road to recovery starts with you, so contact us at 866.314.3222. We also have a convenient way for you to reach us online. When you fill out our simple form or contact us by phone, you have begun to take back your life.