Do you have a mental illness? As a woman seeking treatment, you might hear about cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT). Despite hearing about these methods, you may still ask, “what is CBT vs. DBT?” Read below to learn more about these psychotherapies and how they help you and women like you.
CBT vs. DBT: Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
Cognitive behavioral therapy posits that faulty thinking and learned patterns of bad behavior influence and cause mental illness. To combat these problems and the mental illness that results, CBT uses strategies including:
- Learning to recognize one’s distortions in thinking that are creating problems and then to reevaluate them in light of reality
- Gaining a better understanding of the behavior and motivation of others
- Using problem-solving skills to cope with stressful situations
- Learning to develop a greater sense of confidence in one’s abilities
- Facing one’s fears instead of avoiding them
- Using roleplay to prepare for potentially problematic interactions with others
- Learning to calm one’s mind and relax one’s body
Women who go through CBT with Soledad House develop coping skills to prevent problematic thinking, emotions, and behavior. Your therapist uses two techniques on you. The first is the cognitive restructuring technique, which teaches you how to identify and modify negative, reactive thoughts. The second is the behavioral change technique, wherein the therapist reduces or eliminates your self-defeating behaviors. The therapist then teaches you to respond to problems adaptively and healthily.
CBT vs. DBT: Dialectical Behavior Therapy
In dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT) with Soledad House, the therapist helps you regulate emotions and your tolerance of distress. The therapists also help you effectively manage your relationships with others.
Psychologist Marsha Linehan developed DBT in the 1970s as a reaction to CBT. Linehan found that, when it came to CBT vs. DBT, DBT worked better for patients with suicidal thoughts, and borderline personality disorder (BPD). In CBT vs. DBT, Linehan found that patients reacted to CBT’s change-focused interventions negatively. In CBT, patients felt invalidated and became angry. CBT patients also manipulated conversation away from negative subjects and the idea of change. Therapists spent time focusing on threats of suicide or against themselves rather than developing coping skills or positive behaviors.
CBT vs. DBT focuses first on acceptance, making patients feel valid before asking them to change. DBT, vs. CBT, centers around three theoretical frameworks:
- The biosocial theory of behavior, which explains how BPD develops. The theory posits that some people have predispositions toward emotional vulnerability. Unstable environments intensify these people’s negative emotional responses and influence destructive patterns of interaction. These destructive patterns, in turn, result in suicidal thoughts and actions, along with a BPD diagnosis.
- Zen Buddhism. Zen Buddhism’s mindfulness techniques encourage disciples to focus on the here-and-now. In therapy, this allows patients to take things one at a time and calmly assess situations.
- Dialectics. Conceived initially by German theorist Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, dialectic theory focuses on the thesis, antithesis, and synthesis. The thesis and antithesis are, in therapy, opposite extremes, and the synthesis is the meeting between those extremes. Synthesis bridges the gap, easing emotional tension, and getting patients to accept parts of themselves they dislike.
CBT vs. DBT: Which One is the Best?
If you have BPD and no medical background, making a choice of CBT vs. DBT will be difficult. The utility of CBT vs. DBT for you depends on your mental health problems and individual needs. Consult with the medical professionals by contacting Soledad House online. You can also call today at 866.314.3222 to start your healing process.