Building a life worth living.

Master the skills to cope with life by balancing acceptance with change

Need Support?

Master coping skills

Adelaide DBT is a specialist centre that runs therapeutic programmes which will help you master the skills to cope with life by balancing acceptance with change.

Manage the challenges

Our team of experienced clinicians can help you learn to deal with difficult emotions and experiences so that you can survive anything life sends your way.

A life worth living

We understand that life is difficult and we will help you build your own confidence in your ability to achieve your life aspirations. DBT is known to increase life satisfaction.

What is DBT?

DBT is a modified version of Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) and works from the assumption that the way that we think, feel and behave is all interconnected and can influence one-another. DBT focuses on helping people understand and manage their emotions.

DBT works for people who have:

  • Intense emotions
  • Problems dealing with their emotions
  • Difficulty maintaining relationships (eg. family, partner, work mates)
  • Unstable relationships
  • Low self-esteem
  • Feelings of hopelessness (including feeling suicidal or self-harming)
  • Impulsive reactions
  • Alcohol and other drug problems
  • Poor relationships with food (eg. over eating / dieting)
  • Chronic depression
  • Chronic anxiety
  • Anger issues

Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT) is a specialist evidence-based therapy for people who experience intense emotions and have difficulty in coping with them. DBT was originally designed to treat people who have unhealthy coping (such as self-harm, substance use, hopelessness/avoidance), however there is evidence that DBT improves life satisfaction and mood for many clinical problems. DBT is an established evidence-based thearpy for Borderline Personality Disorder, with excellent evidence that it is effective in the treatment for eating disorders, post traumatic stress disorder, substance abuse and other complex clinical disorders.

There are four core skills within DBT: Mindfulness; Emotional Regulation; Interpersonal Effectiveness; and Distress Tolerance. By developing skills in each of these areas, you will learn how to manage and control emotions.

Have a look at our What to Expect section for information on how DBT is structured.

The first step is to arrange a time for an intake interview. Feel free to give us a call, email, or use our online enquiry to arrange this.

Take the first step

(08) 7071 0718

Please note that we are currently experiencing very high demand for our service and therefore it may take up to 7 days to respond to inquires.

Our process involves an initial assessment with our intake officer. The purpose of the assessment interview is for both you and our team to develop a comprehensive understanding of your difficulties and what you want to achieve. We will provide you with information on DBT and our different programmes, and will discuss what options will help you achieve your goals. During this interview, we will give you a guide on the timeframes of when therapy will commence, and also discuss fees.

We are here to help

We understand that sometimes therapy can be daunting. Our team is approachable and is here to help!

What to expect

You can expect to be supported throughout your time with Adelaide DBT.

Our skills groups are held in an educational format. During these groups, our clinicians will provide you will information on a variety of skills to help you understand yourself and your experiences, how to cope with your emotions, and how to improve your behaviour (if it needs improvement). These skills are talked about quite specifically, however the format of DBT is designed for clients to engage in individual therapy so they have a personalised opportunity to discuss how to apply these skills to their life. Therefore it is expected that clients engage in individual therapy with one of our therapists.

We provide phone coaching between sessions (during DBT Skills Group), so if you are struggling or experience a crisis we are on-call to talk you through the situation and aid in you in applying your developing DBT skills.

What is expected of you

We encourage you to proactively take on board the information provided to you and apply it to yourself and your own circumstances. We are here to help if you get stuck with this! To get the most out of our groups, we encourage you participate by talking about your experience and understanding, as sharing this information within a group allows everyone to develop their understanding together.

If you are doing a programme that includes a skills group, you will be expected to attend all sessions. Attendance is not flexible and you must commit to attending each week before commencing our programmes. We will talk to you about confidentiality and how much to disclose in skills groups in your assessment interview and/or within the first skills group session.

We have a cancellation policy that requires you to advise prior to 12pm the business day before your appointment if you are unable to attend. If you do not let us know with sufficient notice, the full fee will be charged and this fee is not able to be claimed under medicare.


We appreciate how important support from others is!

For Families

It’s hard to see someone you care about suffering. We work with youth, young adults, and adults whilst offering support to the people who care about them. In either our family/loved ones workshops or through personalised coaching, we teach parents, partners, and caregivers strategies for setting healthy boundaries, improving communication, and dealing with a your loved one’s overwhelming emotions.

How can DBT help?

DBT will teach you and your loved one skills to manage your emotions and behaviours. Progress depends on each client's willingness to fully participate in learning and integrating DBT skills into their lives.

Our programmes will help you:

  • set clear boundaries at home
  • improve communication with people you love
  • manage the challenges that come up in families when someone is struggling
  • deal with a family member's overwhelming emotions
  • respond to self-harming or dangerous behavior

We facilitate Family/Carer/Loved Ones workshops as well as hosting the Family Connections programs.

For Health Professionals

Adelaide DBT was developed in response to the need for longer-term structured therapy services in South Australia. We aim to be a specialist service in the provision of DBT as well specialists in the treatment of Borderline Personality Disorder. Therefore, in addition to DBT, we offer individual therapy in a range of evidence-based therapies including Mentalization Based Therapy, Schema Therapy, CBT-E, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy and more, all of which we have extensive experience with and have undertaken comprehensive training in.

If you would like to refer a client to us, we are happy to discuss our wide range of services and how we can support your clients. GP Mental Health Care Plans can be faxed to us on (08) 8180 1730.