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Frequently Asked Questions

These are technical terms for scientifically tested and effective. One of the most rigorous ways to study a treatment is called a randomized controlled trial (RCT). This means the people who participate are randomly assigned to DBT, treatment as usual, and a group not receiving treatment (a control group). This is the type of study that is used to show if medications are effective. RTC’s are considered the gold standard for confirming that a clinical intervention is effective. For example, DBT has about 20 RCT’s showing consistent reduction of suicidal and self-injurious behaviors, hospitalizations, and treatment drop out

DBT is a form of cognitive behavioral therapy developed for chronically suicidal patients often diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder. Research has shown that it works with substance misuse, eating disorder, depression, and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). More generally, DBT focuses on pervasive emotional dysregulation. If you notice any of the following;

  1. Emotions that are at times intense and seem they won’t go away unless you do something to make them. They seem to shoot up, and then take forever to come back down. They feel like they control your life (Emotional Dysregulation).
  2. Relationships that are chaotic. You fight, you make up, it’s a rollercoaster. Or, people take advantage of you, ignore you, and walk over you and you still couldn’t stand it if they left (Interpersonal Dysregulation).
  3. You worry a lot, about everything, especially what people are thinking about you. Sometimes it feels like your thoughts are in control and won’t stop. Sometimes if feels like everything shuts down, or you dissociate. You don’t know who you are or what you want, sometimes blending in with the crowd just to belong (Cognitive Dysregulation). 
  4. You resort to cutting, think about suicide, using substances, or other ineffective behavioral impulses to control your chaotic emotions, thoughts, or relationships (Behavioral Disregulation).​

DBT targets each of these areas specifically in treatment:

  1. Emotion Regulation 
  2. Interpersonal Effectiveness
  3. Core Mindfulness
  4. Distress Tolerance  

Choosing a therapist is an important and difficult decision. It takes a certain level of commitment on the part of both people, and isn’t a relationship that should be taken lightly. In fact, a certain level of commitment and a good working relationship are key components to effective therapy. With that in mind, the first few sessions are considered pre-treatment.

It gives you and your therapist the opportunity to assess what it is you want out of therapy, what therapy can be provided, and if you’re a good fit. For Comprehensive DBT, pre-treatment is required prior to starting Skills Training, so make sure you set up an appointment at least 3 or 4 weeks prior to starting group.

Dr. Benson and Decision Tree Mental Health, PLLC are not currently on insurance panels. This means, insurance coverage will depend on what your specific plan provides for out-of-network reimbursement. However, it is important that you check with your insurance in advance concerning your policy and reimbursement, since due to the differences between plans and companies, we will not be able to provide information on who provides what. 

Our Skills Training is not covered by insurance, but we have different structures set in place to help self pay be more accessible to everyone and their circumstance. Both options are non-refundable and need to be paid in full at least one week prior to beginning the group you’re attending.

For more information on pricing for therapy and skill training please give us a call or fill out our consultation form.

DBT-LBC is an acronym for DBT-Linehan Board of Certification, Certified DBT Clinician. In short, it is a certification that Dr. Benson understands, and is able to provide to a high standard, DBT as prescribed by the developer, Dr. Marsha Linehan. Dr. Linehan’s certification organization has assessed Doug’s demonstration and applicable knowledge as well as his performance of DBT. It’s a good thing. A longer explanation can be found at

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