For whom does DBT work?
DBT is well suited for clients who have struggled with emotion regulation. This therapy is based in a biopsychosocial framework and theory that some people have a predisposition toward emotional hyperarousal and take longer to regain emotional balance than others. This tendency in combination with a social environment that reinforces maladaptive responses to emotion, can lead to the development of patterns of reactivity that are extreme and out of proportion. Such reactions and behaviors may cause problems in relationships, learning, and employment. DBT emphasizes the partnership of the therapist and client. This kind of collaboration can foster the positive alliance necessary to engage in the difficult and challenging work of changing maladaptive patterns to create a “life worth living” as defined by the client.