Spectrum's Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT) Clinic requires clients to attend individual and group therapy on a weekly basis. Clients are supported to learn and practise behavioural skills designed to enhance mindfulness, manage crises, settle emotions, and improve relationships with others.
There are three main components to DBT treatment at Spectrum:
- Skills training group
- Individual therapy sessions
- Phone coaching in between sessions.
Skills training group
This treatment component focuses on enhancing clients’ capabilities by teaching behavioural skills. Group leaders teach the skills and assign homework so that clients can practise using these skills in their everyday lives. Groups meet on a weekly basis for approximately two hours. It takes 24 weeks (six months) to get through the full skills curriculum. The skills course is then repeated, meaning clients are usually enrolled in the DBT skills group for approximately one year.
This treatment component focuses on enhancing client motivation, increasing self-awareness, and helping clients to apply the DBT skills to specific challenges and events in their lives. Individual therapy takes place once a week, for as long as the client is in therapy.
This provides clients with in-the-moment coaching for using coping skills to effectively manage difficult situations that arise in everyday life. Spectrum provides phone coaching during office hours at times when the individual treatment therapist is available.
DBT therapists at Spectrum meet regularly to consult with each other. The consultation process is designed to help therapists provide the best treatment possible. Teams typically meet weekly, and include individual therapists and group leaders who share responsibility for each client’s care. The DBT approach is used within this therapist meeting. (i.e. the therapists walk the talk by applying the principles and approaches of DBT to themselves, as well as to their clients).