Singer and pop star Selena Gomez is reportedly seeking treatment after suffering an emotional breakdown while in the hospital, according to People magazine.
Gomez was hospitalised twice within the last two weeks because of complications from her kidney transplant resulting in low white blood cell count, say media reports. She had the transplant last year and has been open about her health. She revealed in 2015 that she had been diagnosed with lupus, an auto-immune disease.
During her second hospital visit recently, the artist is said to have suffered a panic attack and, as a result, is undergoing dialectical behaviour therapy (DBT) for her mental health. People quotes a source as saying, “the panic attack in the hospital was the tipping point.”
Gomez has earlier spoken about DBT and how it has helped her cope and “completely changed her life.” In 2017, she told Vogue:
I wish more people would talk about therapy. We girls, we’re taught to be almost too resilient, to be strong and sexy and cool and laid-back, the girl who’s down. We also need to feel allowed to fall apart.
DBT is a specific type of psychotherapy (talk therapy) that uses cognitive behavioural approach. It tries to identify and change negative thinking patterns and pushes for positive behavioural changes, according to WebMD.
It teaches patients skills to cope with, and change, unhealthy behaviours. The treatment focuses on acceptance and change as its ultimate goals. It lays emphasis on improving communication, regulating emotions, and incorporating mindfulness practices.
It provides therapeutic skills in four key areas:
- mindfulness, or the ability to accept and be present in the moment
- distress tolerance, or the ability to tolerate a negative emotion instead of trying to escape from it
- emotional regulation, or the ability to manage and change intense and problematic emotions
- interpersonal effectiveness, or the ability to “communicate with others in a way that is assertive, maintains self-respect, and strengthens relationships”\
The treatment involves learning the skills from a therapist in a group setting, and then meeting individually with the therapist in between sessions.
Among those skills are self-soothing and emergency crisis skills “that help you when your feelings are really at a 10.”