|Specialist Areas:||Addiction, Alcohol & drug issues, Gambling|
4 Oxford Terrace
|Bio:||Successful treatment starts with a clear assessment of a client’s current circumstances and history. An initial appointment will usually last one and a half to two hours during which time I will ask a range of questions about the area of concern, broader substance use or other potentially addictive behaviours, daily functioning, and personal history. I welcome involvement of family/whanau at this point or at any other times during treatment.
In treating alcohol and drug problems and other addictions, I use a range of techniques that vary – depending on the individual. These may involve enhancing motivation, examining the function of the problem behaviour in order to find alternative ways to meet these needs, or changing the circumstances that are supporting the problem behaviour. I also liaise with GPs or psychiatrists when medication may be useful. Once change has been made, learning to avoid relapse can enhance treatment effectiveness. While I operate from a psychological understanding of addiction, I am comfortable with supporting people who wish to engage with the 12-step model (e.g., Alcoholics Anonymous).
In addition to my private practice I am an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychological Medicine and Deputy Director (Research) of the National Addiction Centre, and work as a Senior Clinical Psychologist at the Christchurch Methadone Programme. I have practiced Clinical Psychology for 17 years and I have over forty peer-reviewed publications in the area of addiction assessment and treatment