The Most Promising Treatment for Borderline Personality Disorder: A Comprehensive Ranking

Choose the treatment you think is the most promising!

Author: Gregor Krambs
Updated on Apr 11, 2024 07:46
Are you ready to explore the power of your opinion? Dive into the world of Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) and join our thriving community at StrawPoll as we rank the most promising treatments for this complex mental health condition! Be part of an insightful and engaging conversation as thousands cast their votes and share their experiences with various treatment options. Whether you're a healthcare professional, a patient, or simply curious about BPD, this ranking offers an enlightening perspective on the potential paths to recovery. And don't worry, if you feel like we've missed an essential treatment, you can easily suggest it as an option. So, gear up to unleash your voice and let's embark on this exciting journey of discovery and understanding—together!

What Is the Most Promising Treatment for Borderline Personality Disorder?

  1. 1
    Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)
    MargaritaJP · Public domain
    DBT is a therapy based on cognitive-behavioral techniques that focuses on helping individuals regulate their emotions, improve interpersonal relationships, and develop coping mechanisms. It has shown to be effective in reducing self-harm behaviors and suicidal ideation in individuals with BPD.
    Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) is a type of psychotherapy that was developed specifically for individuals with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD). It combines elements of cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) and other therapeutic techniques to help individuals regulate their emotions, manage distress, and improve their interpersonal relationships.
    • Target population: Individuals diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD)
    • Core components: Mindfulness, interpersonal effectiveness, emotion regulation, distress tolerance
    • Therapeutic techniques: Skills training, individual therapy, group therapy, phone coaching
    • Evidence-based: Supported by research and scientific studies
    • Collaborative approach: Therapist and client work together in treatment planning and goal setting
    Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) in other rankings
  2. 2
    MBT is a psychoanalytic psychotherapy that focuses on improving the individual's ability to understand their own and others' mental states, which is often impaired in individuals with BPD. It has shown to be effective in reducing symptoms of BPD, particularly in improving interpersonal relationships.
    Mentalization-Based Treatment (MBT) is a psychotherapeutic approach specifically designed for individuals with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD). It seeks to help individuals develop their mentalizing abilities, which refers to the capacity to understand one's own and others' behaviors in terms of underlying thoughts, feelings, and intentions.
    • Duration: Usually conducted over one to two years
    • Psychodynamic Approach: Rooted in psychodynamic principles, emphasizing exploration of unconscious processes
    • Treatment Focus: Enhancing mentalization skills and reducing symptoms of BPD
    • Engagement: Building a collaborative therapeutic alliance
    • Format: Individual and group therapy sessions
  3. 3
    TFP is a psychoanalytic treatment that focuses on helping individuals with BPD develop a more stable sense of self and improve their relationships. It has shown to be effective in reducing symptoms of BPD and improving interpersonal functioning.
    Transference-Focused Psychotherapy (TFP) is a specialized treatment approach for individuals with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD). It aims to help patients develop more integrated and stable sense of self, improve their interpersonal relationships, and reduce impulsive and self-destructive behaviors. TFP is a manualized, psychodynamic therapy that typically consists of one to two sessions per week for an extended period.
    • Duration: Typically one to two sessions per week over an extended period
    • Focus: Addressing the patient's internal conflicts and transference relationship with the therapist
    • Goals: Improved emotion regulation, development of a more stable sense of self, and healthier interpersonal relationships
    • Techniques: Interpretation, clarification, confrontation, and exploration of transference and countertransference
    • Duration of Treatment: Long-term, ranging from several months to several years
  4. 4

    Schema Therapy

    Dr. Jeffrey E. Young
    Schema therapy is a psychotherapy that focuses on identifying and changing negative patterns of thoughts, feelings, and behaviors that are deeply ingrained in a person's personality structure. It has shown to be effective in reducing symptoms of BPD and improving interpersonal functioning.
    Schema Therapy is an evidence-based treatment approach for Borderline Personality Disorder that was developed by Dr. Jeffrey E. Young. It combines elements from cognitive-behavioral, psychodynamic, and experiential therapies to help individuals identify and change unhealthy patterns or schemas that contribute to their emotional and relationship difficulties.
    • Integration of Approaches: Schema Therapy integrates cognitive-behavioral, psychodynamic, and experiential therapeutic approaches.
    • Schema Identification: It focuses on helping individuals identify and understand their maladaptive schemas or core beliefs.
    • Schema Change: The therapy aims to modify and replace unhealthy schemas with healthier, adaptive alternatives.
    • Emotion Regulation: It includes techniques to improve emotional regulation and reduce impulsive behaviors.
    • Limited Reparenting: Schema Therapy involves providing limited reparenting experiences to meet unmet childhood needs.
  5. 5
    EMDR is a therapy technique that uses eye movements to help individuals process traumatic experiences. It has shown to be effective in reducing symptoms of BPD, particularly in reducing emotional dysregulation and impulsivity.
    Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) is a psychotherapy approach that is commonly used to treat individuals who have experienced trauma or distressing life events. It was developed in the late 1980s by Francine Shapiro, a psychologist and educator. EMDR aims to facilitate the processing and integration of traumatic memories in order to reduce their distressing effects and promote psychological healing.
    • Purpose: To alleviate the distress associated with traumatic memories and facilitate healing.
    • Technique: Clients focus on a disturbing memory while simultaneously engaging in specific eye movements or other forms of bi-lateral stimulation.
    • Phases: EMDR typically involves eight phases, including history taking, preparation, assessment, desensitization, installation, body scan, closure, and reevaluation.
    • Bilateral Stimulation: The use of eye movements, taps, or auditory cues to stimulate both sides of the brain, facilitating the processing of traumatic memories.
    • Processing Targets: EMDR can be used to treat various types of trauma, including post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), phobias, anxiety, and other emotional disturbances.
    Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) in other rankings
  6. 6
    CBT is a therapy technique that focuses on changing negative patterns of thoughts and behaviors. It has shown to be effective in reducing symptoms of BPD, particularly in reducing impulsivity and emotional dysregulation.
    Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is a widely used form of therapy that focuses on the relationship between thoughts, emotions, and behaviors. It aims to help individuals identify and challenge negative or unhelpful thought patterns and develop more positive and adaptive ways of thinking and responding to situations. CBT is based on the idea that our thoughts and beliefs influence our feelings and actions, and by changing these unhealthy or irrational thoughts, we can experience improved well-being and functioning.
    • Duration: Usually short-term, lasting 12-20 sessions
    • Structure: Structured and goal-oriented
    • Collaborative: Therapist and client work together to identify and solve problems
    • Evidence-based: Supported by extensive scientific research
    • Focused on the present: Primarily seeks to address current issues and difficulties
    Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) in other rankings
  7. 7
    ACT is a therapy technique that focuses on accepting difficult thoughts and emotions and committing to values-based actions. It has shown to be effective in reducing symptoms of BPD, particularly in reducing emotional dysregulation and improving interpersonal relationships.
    Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) is a popular form of psychotherapy that aims to help individuals develop psychological flexibility and improve their overall well-being. The therapy focuses on promoting acceptance of thoughts and feelings, rather than trying to eliminate or control them, and encourages individuals to commit to behaviors that align with their personal values. ACT combines cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) techniques with mindfulness and acceptance strategies to empower individuals to live a meaningful and fulfilling life.
    • Goal: To enhance psychological flexibility and well-being
    • Approach: Combination of CBT, mindfulness, and acceptance strategies
    • Techniques: Defusion, acceptance, mindfulness, self-as-context
    • Values-Based Action: Focusing on committed action aligned with personal values
    • Experiential Avoidance: Identifying and reducing avoidance of unwanted internal experiences
    Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) in other rankings
  8. 8
    MBCT is a therapy technique that combines mindfulness meditation with cognitive-behavioral therapy. It has shown to be effective in reducing symptoms of BPD, particularly in reducing emotional dysregulation and improving interpersonal relationships.
    Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) is a therapeutic approach that combines elements of mindfulness training and cognitive therapy. It was developed as a psychosocial intervention primarily for individuals with recurrent depression, but has also shown promise in the treatment of Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD).
    • Integration of mindfulness and cognitive therapy: MBCT integrates mindfulness practices, such as meditation and mindfulness exercises, with principles of cognitive therapy.
    • Focus on present moment: MBCT helps individuals with BPD to focus on the present moment, rather than being trapped in negative thoughts and emotions.
    • Cultivation of non-judgmental awareness: MBCT encourages individuals to develop a non-judgmental awareness of their thoughts, emotions, and bodily sensations.
    • Identification of negative thinking patterns: MBCT helps individuals with BPD identify and challenge negative thinking patterns that contribute to distress.
    • Development of adaptive coping strategies: MBCT aims to develop adaptive coping strategies to manage distressing thoughts and emotions effectively.
  9. 9
    Psychodynamic psychotherapy is a therapy technique that focuses on exploring unconscious thoughts and feelings. It has shown to be effective in reducing symptoms of BPD, particularly in improving interpersonal relationships.
    Psychodynamic Psychotherapy is a therapeutic approach that focuses on exploring unconscious thoughts, emotions, and past experiences to gain insight into and resolve current psychological conflicts. It aims to help individuals with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) develop a better understanding of themselves and their relationships.
    • Focus: Exploring unconscious thoughts and emotions
    • Goals: Promote self-awareness, develop healthier coping strategies, and improve interpersonal relationships
    • Duration: Typically long-term, with sessions ranging from several months to several years
    • Techniques: Free association, interpretation, dream analysis, analysis of defense mechanisms, transference, and countertransference
    • Therapist's Role: Facilitating exploration, providing interpretations, and maintaining a supportive therapeutic alliance
  10. 10

    Group Therapy

    Irvin D. Yalom
    Group therapy is a therapy technique that involves individuals with BPD meeting in a group setting to discuss their experiences and feelings. It has shown to be effective in reducing symptoms of BPD, particularly in improving interpersonal relationships.
    Group therapy is a therapeutic approach for treating Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) that involves regular sessions where individuals with BPD come together in a group setting to receive support, guidance, and treatment. The sessions are led by a trained therapist who facilitates the therapy process by providing structure and creating a safe and supportive environment for participants to explore and address their emotional and relational difficulties.
    • Treatment Duration: Group therapy sessions typically last for 1-2 hours, and the overall duration of treatment can vary depending on individual needs. It usually involves weekly or bi-weekly sessions over a period of several months to years.
    • Group Size: The ideal group size can range from 6 to 12 participants to ensure a balance between individual attention and group dynamics. However, larger or smaller groups can also be effective depending on the specific circumstances.
    • Psychoeducation: Group therapy often includes psychoeducation, where participants learn about BPD, its symptoms, causes, and coping strategies. This knowledge helps individuals better understand their condition and develop skills to manage their emotions and behaviors.
    • Interpersonal Learning: One of the core aspects of group therapy is facilitating interpersonal learning. Through interactions with other group members, participants have opportunities to gain insights into their own patterns of relating, receive feedback, and experiment with new ways of relating.
    • Support and Validation: Group therapy provides a supportive and validating environment where individuals with BPD can share their experiences, gain support from others facing similar challenges, and feel understood and accepted without judgment.
    Group Therapy in other rankings

Missing your favorite treatment?


Ranking factors for promising treatment

  1. Empirical evidence
    The extent to which a treatment has been empirically validated through scientific studies and clinical trials.
  2. Efficacy
    The effectiveness of the treatment in reducing the symptoms associated with Borderline Personality Disorder.
  3. Safety
    The potential risks and side effects associated with the treatment.
  4. Acceptability
    The level of acceptance of the treatment among patients, including factors such as ease of use, accessibility, and adherence.
  5. Availability
    The availability and accessibility of the treatment, including factors such as cost and availability of trained professionals.
  6. Individual differences
    The extent to which the treatment is tailored to individual differences such as demographic, cultural, and clinical factors.

About this ranking

This is a community-based ranking of the most promising treatment for Borderline Personality Disorder. We do our best to provide fair voting, but it is not intended to be exhaustive. So if you notice something or treatment is missing, feel free to help improve the ranking!


  • 156 votes
  • 10 ranked items

Voting Rules

A participant may cast an up or down vote for each treatment once every 24 hours. The rank of each treatment is then calculated from the weighted sum of all up and down votes.

More information on most promising treatment for borderline personality disorder

Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) is a mental health condition that affects the way a person thinks, feels and behaves. It is characterized by intense and unstable emotions, impulsive behavior, distorted self-image, and unstable relationships. BPD is often associated with self-harm, suicidal behavior, and substance abuse. There are various treatment options available for BPD, including psychotherapy, medication, and alternative therapies such as mindfulness and yoga. However, there is no single treatment that works for everyone with BPD, and it often requires a combination of treatments tailored to the individual's needs. Recent research has shown promising results for Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), a form of psychotherapy that focuses on teaching skills to manage emotions, improve relationships, and reduce self-destructive behavior. Other forms of psychotherapy, such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Schema Therapy, have also shown to be effective for treating BPD. Medications such as mood stabilizers, antipsychotics, and antidepressants may also be used to manage symptoms of BPD. However, medication alone is not considered an effective treatment for BPD. It is important to seek professional help if you or someone you know is experiencing symptoms of BPD. With the right treatment and support, individuals with BPD can learn to manage their symptoms and lead fulfilling lives.

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