Dialectical behaviour therapy (DBT), a cognitive behavioural treatment, was developed originally for suicidal and non-suicidal self-injurious behaviour in adults with borderline personality disorder, and for emotional dysregulation, but it can be adapted for use with young people with similar challenges. The aims of DBT are to reduce life-threatening suicidal behaviours and therapy-interfering behaviours, to teach behavioural, coping and social skills, and to improve quality of life. The emotional and behavioural dysregulation and impulsive/avoidant behaviour profile in adolescents means DBT is a potentially effective treatment option for this patient population.
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