Many schools are now introducing Dialectical Behavioural Therapy (DBT) skills as part of their curricula to help support the emotional and mental health of students. A DBT skills group is a form of cognitive-behavioural therapy that teaches skills in four key areas: mindfulness, interpersonal effectiveness, emotion regulation, and distress tolerance. These skills can be very helpful for children in schools, as they provide coping strategies for difficult situations and help foster resilience. In this blog post, we will explore how a DBT skills worksheets can support children in schools.

What is DBT?

Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT) is a form of cognitive behavioural therapy developed by Marsha Linehan, Ph.D. It combines traditional cognitive-behavioural techniques with mindfulness, acceptance and change strategies to provide individuals with an approach to better manage emotions and reduce problem behaviours. DBT is often used to treat individuals with mental health disorders such as depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder.

At its core, DBT focuses on helping individuals become more mindful and aware of their emotions and how they interact with the world around them. Through a series of structured exercises, clients learn how to use their personal strengths and strategies to identify and cope with difficult emotional states. Additionally, they gain skills to help them understand and regulate their emotions and develop healthier relationships with themselves and others.

DBT has been widely adopted in both clinical and school settings due to its efficacy in helping children and adolescents cope with challenging behaviours. Research has shown that when properly implemented, DBT can help improve behaviour, decrease disruptive behaviours, and improve the overall functioning of students in school.

How can DBT help children in schools?

Dialectical behaviour therapy (DBT) is an evidence-based treatment that has been used to help people with a variety of mental health conditions. It is now being adapted and utilized in school settings to help children manage emotions and behaviour. In a school setting, DBT can be used to help children develop skills to manage emotions and behaviour in a more effective way.

DBT can provide children with the tools to understand their emotions and how they affect their behaviour. Through the teaching of core skills such as emotion regulation, distress tolerance, mindfulness, and interpersonal effectiveness, children can learn new ways to manage their emotions and make more positive choices in challenging situations. This can help them become more successful in their academic, social, and emotional lives.

With DBT, children can learn to identify their emotional triggers and practice appropriate responses to stressors, rather than using maladaptive behaviours to cope. The core skills that are taught with DBT can help children be better able to communicate their feelings, problem solve difficult situations, and take responsibility for their own behaviour.

In addition to the core DBT skills, it is important for schools to also focus on providing a safe and supportive learning environment for all children. Schools should create an atmosphere where children feel respected and heard, and where they can express their emotions without fear of punishment or retribution. With this approach, children will be better able to build resilience and grow emotionally.

What are some specific DBT skills that can help children in schools?

Dialectical behaviour therapy (DBT) is an evidence-based treatment designed to help people manage difficult emotions, thoughts, and behaviours. In schools, DBT can provide children with strategies to navigate difficult situations, improve their relationships, and achieve their goals.

The four main areas of DBT are: mindfulness, interpersonal effectiveness, emotion regulation, and distress tolerance. Each of these components contains specific skills that can be used by children in school settings.

Mindfulness involves being present in the moment, focusing on what is happening around you and how it affects your emotions. For example, a student may use mindful breathing or other mindful techniques to become more aware of their thoughts and feelings before responding to an interaction.

Interpersonal effectiveness includes skills like setting boundaries, being assertive, and being a good listener. This can be especially beneficial in a school setting, where children need to be able to express their needs and wants without feeling overwhelmed or unheard.

Emotion regulation focuses on managing emotions and minimizing their negative impact on behaviour. Skills include identifying triggers, tolerating distress, using coping statements, and engaging in calming activities. In school settings, these skills can help children manage their emotions during difficult interactions or challenging situations.

How can I get my child started with DBT?

If your child is struggling with mental health issues, Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT) may be a great option to help them manage their emotions and behaviours. DBT is an evidence-based treatment that focuses on helping individuals learn skills to regulate their emotions and thoughts, improve interpersonal relationships, and increase their overall wellbeing.

The best way to get your child started with DBT is to talk to their doctor or mental health provider about the possibility of DBT treatment. They will be able to assess whether DBT is the right approach for your child’s individual needs and provide a referral to a qualified DBT therapist in your area.

In addition, you can seek out a DBT therapist on your own if your child is old enough to make decisions about their mental health treatment. Look for a therapist who has specialized training in DBT and has experience treating adolescents or children. It is important to find a therapist that your child feels comfortable with, as they will need to feel safe and supported in order to benefit from the therapy.

You can also investigate group therapy options, as some DBT programs may offer group sessions specifically for children. This can be a great way for your child to learn new skills in a supportive environment and build meaningful connections with peers who are facing similar struggles.