DBT has received widespread recognition as its research instilled much-needed optimism into the management of borderline personality disorder in the early 1990s. DBT has the most evidence supporting effectiveness for BPD, because of the larger number of Randomized Controlled Trials over the past 20 years.
In fact, it has been empirically tested more than any other treatment in BPD (Bendit, 2014). DBT has built an impressive reputation within psychology and psychiatry as an effective treatment for deliberate self-harm and chronic suicidal behaviors in patients with BPD. DBT was reported to have specific utility in “addressing suicide attempts in borderline personality without being generally effective in the overall personality management” (Reddy & Vijay, 2017). Findings support that there is a significant improvement in patients receiving DBT in terms of interpersonal functioning and significant decreases in emergency room visits, borderline symptoms, depression, symptom distress, and anger (Reddy & Vijay, 2017).
Importantly, a review on effective psychotherapies for the treatment of BPD suggested that DBT interventions with skills training (DBT-S, standard DBT) were more effective than interventions without skills training (Links et al., 2017). Another recent comprehensive review and meta-analysis (Oud et al. 2018) with a total of 1375 BPD participants examined the effectiveness of specialized psychotherapies, including DBT, and other psychotherapies compared to clinical control groups. Those specialized psychotherapies were found to be significantly more effective than treatment as usual or community treatment by experts.