A Behavioral Health Residential Treatment Program for Teen Girls

The Girls Transition Center (GTC) is an intermediate, secure residential treatment program for teen females ages 12–17 years. Patients enter the program through a Division of Child and Family Service or Juvenile Justice Service referral. Most girls stay in our program for four to six months.

We develop an individualized treatment program for each resident using the dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) model. The treatment team includes a psychiatrist, nurse, social workers, and psychiatric technicians each who have been trained using DBT principles.

While in the GTC, daily educational programming is provided teachers in Granite School District.

Program Access

Most girls enter the program through a Utah State Department of Human Services* referral and often present with complex diagnostic issues including these:

  • Mood instability
  • Running away behavior
  • Substance use, eating disorders
  • Self-injury/self-harming behavior
  • Poor self-image
  • Ongoing suicidal thoughts or attempts

While in the program, clients will learn to internalize and demonstrate the following skills:

  • Mindfulness
  • Distress Tolerance
  • Emotion Regulation
  • Interpersonal Effectiveness
  • Walking the Middle Path

*The GTC is a DHS contracted provider

Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT)

In the center, we use a therapy called dialectical behavior therapy (DBT). It is an evidenced based mode of treatment used with teens who have a difficult time controlling their emotions and behaviors.

Emotional and behavioral dysregulation (abnormality or impairment) often contribute to a teen’s ability to develop a stable sense of self, making and maintaining fulfilling and healthy relationships with peers and family.

5 Skill Sets

Behavior that is impulsive or avoidant can be a result of emotion dysregulation or an effort to try to regulate or gain control. The following five skill sets have been designed to treat the problems that are associated with emotional dysregulation.

  1. Mindfulness skills assist adolescents with increasing their self-awareness and attentional control while decreasing suffering and increasing pleasure;
  2. Distress tolerance skills teach ways to decrease impulsivity and accept reality as it is
  3. Emotion regulation skills teach a teen how to increase positive emotions and decrease negative emotions
  4. Interpersonal effectiveness skills teach teens how to improve in making and maintaining relationships with peer and family members and build self-respect.
  5. Walking the middle path skills teach ways to decrease family conflict by teaching validation, behavior change principles and dialectical thinking and behaving.
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