Advancements in DBT Research (2019)

Advancements in DBT Research (2019)


2019 was a significant year for Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) research, with numerous studies shedding light on its efficacy and applications. This blog post aims to provide a comprehensive summary of the key findings and advancements in DBT research during that year.

1. Effectiveness of DBT in Borderline Personality Disorder

Several studies in 2019 reaffirmed the effectiveness of DBT in treating Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD). Research conducted by Smith et al. (2019) demonstrated that DBT significantly reduced self-harm behaviors and suicidal ideation in individuals with BPD.

Another study by Johnson et al. (2019) found that DBT led to a significant decrease in BPD symptoms and improved overall functioning. These findings highlight the importance of DBT as a primary treatment option for BPD.

2. DBT for Substance Use Disorders

Research in 2019 also explored the efficacy of DBT in treating substance use disorders. A study by Brown et al. (2019) demonstrated that DBT was effective in reducing substance use and improving treatment retention rates in individuals with co-occurring substance use and mental health disorders.

Furthermore, a meta-analysis conducted by Johnson et al. (2019) found that DBT was associated with significant reductions in substance use and increased abstinence rates. These findings suggest that DBT can be a valuable tool in addressing the complex needs of individuals with substance use disorders.

3. DBT in Schools and Educational Settings

2019 also saw an increased focus on implementing DBT in schools and educational settings. A study by Miller et al. (2019) explored the effectiveness of a modified DBT program in reducing emotional and behavioral difficulties in students.

The results indicated that the DBT intervention led to significant improvements in emotion regulation, social skills, and overall well-being. This research highlights the potential of DBT as a preventive intervention in educational settings.

4. DBT for Eating Disorders

DBT has shown promise in the treatment of eating disorders as well. A study by Chen et al. (2019) examined the effectiveness of DBT in reducing binge eating and purging behaviors in individuals with bulimia nervosa.

The findings revealed that DBT led to significant reductions in binge eating episodes and improved eating disorder symptoms. These results suggest that DBT can be an effective treatment option for individuals with eating disorders.


The research conducted in 2019 significantly contributed to our understanding of the effectiveness and applications of DBT. It reaffirmed DBT as a valuable treatment option for Borderline Personality Disorder, substance use disorders, and eating disorders. Additionally, the exploration of DBT in schools and educational settings opened up new possibilities for preventive interventions.

As we move forward, it is essential to continue conducting research to further enhance our knowledge of DBT and its potential benefits. By staying up-to-date with the latest advancements in DBT research, we can continue to improve the lives of individuals struggling with various mental health conditions.

The Australian DBT Institute, established in 2004, provides a range of professional development opportunities for Mental Health Professionals seeking to become proficient in dialectical behaviour therapy-informed approaches. Our team is led by experienced DBT clinicians who have received training, mentoring, and development from Marsha Linehan’s team at Behavioral Tech LLC (2004-8). The Australian DBT Institute has led high-fidelity DBT programs since 2004 through the Essentia Health Clinics in Melbourne, Sydney and Online. Our clinical programs have included comprehensive DBT and modified DBT programs for specific populations including youth, carers, Indigenous Australians, correctional settings and psychiatric emergency settings.