Dialectical Behaviour Therapy

at melissa kent psychology


DBT stands for Dialectical Behaviour Therapy.The goal of DBT is to help clients build a life that they experience as worth living. In DBT, the client and the therapist work together to set goals that are meaningful to the client. Often this means they work on ways to decrease harmful behaviours and replace them with effective, life-enhancing behaviours.

At Melissa Kent Psychology, we offer a range of  DBT options, delivered by our team of highly trained and experienced DBT therapists.

We offer DBT skills training groups, and access to individual DBT therapists. We will also be offering a comprehensive DBT program in 2019.

we also offer training and supervision in DBT to mental health professionals.

what is DBT?

DBT is a form of cognitive-behaviour therapy that has demonstrated effectiveness in helping people regulate their emotions, reduce impulsive and risky behaviours, reduce feelings of anxiety and depression, reduce suicidal and self-harming behaviours, and improve interpersonal interactions.

Could DBT be right for you? Ask yourself the following questions.

Are you currently, or do you frequently experience, any of the following?

  •  Anger, moodiness, irritability?
  • Mood swings, difficulty controlling your emotions?
  • Feeling empty, low self-esteem?
  • Anxiety about relationships, efforts to avoid being abandoned?
  • Impulsive, risky behaviour?
  • Self-harm, threatening or attempting suicide?

Do you have a diagnosis of Borderline Personality Disorder?

If you answered yes to any of the above, DBT can help.

DBT skills training groups

DBT skills training focuses on enhancing clients’ capabilities by teaching behavioural skills. Skills training is taught in groups; the group is run like a class where the group leaders teach the skills and assign homework. The homework helps clients practise using the skills in their everyday lives. Groups meet on a weekly basis for approximately 2.5 hours.

There are four sets of skills in DBT skills training:

Mindfulness: the practice of being fully aware and present in this one moment;

Distress Tolerance: how to tolerate pain in difficult situations, deal with crises, and avoid reacting impulsively or making things worse;

Emotion Regulation: how to change emotions that you want to change, increase positive emotions, and reduce mood instability;

Interpersonal Effectiveness: how to ask for what you want and say no while maintaining self-respect and relationships with others.

Skills training groups are offered in three modules:

Distress Tolerance - 2 weeks of mindfulness skills + 6 weeks of distress tolerance skills

Emotion Regulation - 2 weeks of mindfulness skills + 7 weeks of emotion regulation skills

Interpersonal Effectiveness - 2 weeks of mindfulness skills + 5 weeks of interpersonal effectiveness skills. 

At Melissa Kent Psychology, you can do skills training groups on their own, or combine them with individual therapy.

Our skills training groups are run on Monday evenings by Melissa Kent. To register your interest or find out more, please email admin@melissakentpsychology.com.au or call us on 3184 2559.

individual therapy

Individual therapy in DBT is focused on helping clients to apply DBT skills to specific challenges and events in their lives. Individual therapy allows you to explore the DBT skills in more depth, and problem solve any difficulties you are having with them. Your individual therapist will also help you understand why you do the things you do, and celebrate the changes you make.

You can do individual DBT alone, or in combination with skills training groups.

Individual DBT is offered by Melissa Kent, Sarah Swannell and Jacklyn Whybrow.

consultation team

The DBT consultation team is focused on the people who provide DBT, including individual therapists, skills training group leaders, case managers, and others who help treat a client who is undertaking DBT. The consultation team is intended to support DBT providers in their work; it’s almost like therapy for the therapist. The consultation team is designed to help therapists stay motivated and competent so they can provide the best treatment possible. The consultation team is a crucial part of DBT and all therapists doing DBT should be part of one.

comprehensive DBT program

From 2019, we will be offering a comprehensive DBT program at Melissa Kent Psychology. Comprehensive DBT involves the four components of DBT:

Individual therapy + skills training groups + phone coaching + consultation team.

Each component or mode of treatment is intended to meet a specific function, and combined provide intensity and support to both the client and the therapist.

If you would like to stay informed about the comprehensive DBT program at Melissa Kent Psychology, please complete the form below and we will keep you in the loop.

Please keep me in the loop about DBT.

DBT Training and Supervision

Melissa Kent and Sarah Swannell offer training and supervision in DBT, to individuals, groups and organisations. Both are STAP-trained.

Both Melissa and Sarah have experience in training and supervision and share a passion for spreading knowledge and awareness of DBT.

If you would like to discuss your training or supervision needs, please contact us the practice at admin@melissakentpsychology or on 07 3184 2559.

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