DBT Skills Group for Individuals with Complex Emotional Needs: A Pilot Study

  •  Matthew J. E. Catino    


The growing prevalence of personality disorder diagnoses has contributed to the rise of alternative group-based treatments. DBT skills-based groups are being newly implemented across community mental health services as a stand-alone treatment option. Previous research has demonstrated that DBT skills groups are equally effective interventions when compared to more traditional options. Previous studies have primarily relied on cross-sectional data therefore, unable to assess progress over time - a potentially key mechanism when exploring participants' development throughout a group intervention. The presented pilot study uses data from self-reported measures after each module of the DBT-S group to ascertain correlations in participants' emotional intensity and quality of life. We found that participants reported significant quality of life improvements, highlighting consistent progress in this area. We also found significant results in self-reported reductions in emotional intensity; Results which could be attributed to the focus on coping skills development and distress management teaching.

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