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DBT is a complete intensive outpatient program that involves weekly involvement in ALL of four services for one year for adults OR six months for adolescents and outcomes are based in total program commitment: *Individual DBT Therapy Sessions *DBT Skills Classes *Phone Coaching. ALL four services are required at Dialectical Behavior Therapy of Charleston to reflect extensive background in the most promising DBT research outcomes.

“Real” DBT is a specialized program- 1:1/Class/Phone/Team

Comprehensive DBT program components in blue bold below:

1. Individual DBT Specialized Sessions- Highly Specialized

*All 4 titles (bolded) are needed in order for the name DBT to be ethically used; DBT is a whole program.
Consists of one year commitment of one-on-one weekly/bi-weekly sessions with an intensively trained DBT therapist. Our work in individual sessions is to personalize skills learned in class by replacing destructive and unhelpful behaviors with such skills, assisting clients in “building a life worth living” through a deeply validating approach to a complex form of behavior modification. Individual sessions are HIGHLY specialized, central in DBT recovery, rely heavily on the deep trust-building from this stylized therapeutic relationship applied solely by an intensively-trained DBT therapist. DBT therapists are rigorously trained to apply the complex specialization of DBT in this individual setting.
*Standard talk therapy is not appropriate nor even ethical for most clients who meet criteria to be in the DBT program.

DBT Prolonged Exposure (PE) Protocol for Complex PTSD

This is worked into the DBT Program in individual therapy sessions when applicable. Prolonged Exposure has incredible research backing demonstrating strong outcomes for individuals with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), and when it is DBT PE Protocol its success rates not only target ‘complex’ and ‘multiple trauma’ PTSD- they also strengthen outcomes in the DBT program. Exposure based therapies may also be beneficial for other anxiety-related struggles.

Yoga Therapeutics in DBT Sessions

Yoga Therapeutics may be optionally worked into therapy sessions and is tailored to the individual’s needs and DBT skills are weaved into the practice. Our 500-hr advanced certified yoga therapeutics instructor has over a decade of yoga teaching experience all around the Charleston area and has experience working with many levels, ages and styles to fit a specific client’s needs. Her specialized advanced training in “Yoga Therapeutics” is a revolutionary approach that combines the ancient practices of yoga wisdom with the current intelligence of physical therapy, contemplative psychology and other medical sciences. Her teaching background further involves working in a specialized physical therapy practice and at the Medical University of South Carolina’s Wellness Center.

2. DBT Skills Training Class

*All 4 titles (bolded) are needed in order for the name DBT to be ethically used; DBT is a whole program.
Through one year of weekly classroom style instruction, you learn skills from five modules and two sub-modules:


Mindfulness – how to be in control of your mind instead of your mind being in control of you.

Emotion Regulation – how to understand the function of emotions & to make them helpful to you instead of chaotic.

Interpersonal Effectiveness – how to ask for what you need and how to say no in a way you are heard & how to reduce conflict in relationships.

Distress Tolerance – This is your emotional “first-aid kit” for what to do when in crisis or when emotions seem unbearable.

Midpath – develop the ability to acknowledge and ‘synthesize’ opposites, whether the conflict lies within yourself or is interpersonal; move out of all or nothing thinking & acting.


Self-Compassion – develop the skills that allow you to learn how to treat yourself lovingly; invite the ‘inner critic’ to dissolve.

Self-Validation – acknowledge your experience with acceptance and respect; develop the ability to validate others in this regard as a domino effect.

3. Telephone Coaching

*All 4 titles (bolded) are needed in order for the name DBT to be ethically used; DBT is a whole program.
A very important part of DBT is to offer ongoing coaching in how to use skills in-between sessions when problems arise. Phone coaching is an open access service that is utilized on an as-needed basis by a DBT specialist. Crucial in DBT skills application, it is applied with great care in DBT’s style of behavior modification.

4. Consultation Team

*All 4 titles (bolded) are needed in order for the name DBT to be ethically used; DBT is a whole program.
We are committed to maintaining a high quality of treatment. In team consultation, we work together to create the best treatment program for you, to keep each other adherent to DBT principles and protocols, to continue our education/training on the most recent DBT research. DBT teams may be local or virtual. True DBT teams are made of all intensively trained DBT therapist who have met criteria to become DBT specialists (shown on site page: “Choosing “real” DBT + Properly Trained DBT Therapist?”).

Skills Education Classes for Parents/Caretakers/Family Members

These classes help families learn skills and how to be supportive of adults or adolescents in the program.
This service is currently not actively offered.

Our program adheres to the principles of DBT as taught by its founder, Marsha Linehan (