Communication and Engaging with People with Addictions

Cover image for lecture: Communication and Engaging with People with Addictions

Lecture Overview

How do you communicate with your patients who are substance addicted? Do you adopt the 'Traditional Approach' and use confrontational techniques or are you 'Motivating for Change' by making the client feel safe and validated? Learn the correct attitudes to adopt when engaging a patient, how to conduct motivational interviewing and the steps a person needs to take to become fully engaged in their recovery from addiction.


Portrait of Geoffrey Ahern
Geoffrey Ahern

Geoffrey Ahern is a senior mental health clinician and educator who splits his time between working with people in a mental health crisis in the ED setting and working proactively to educate other health professionals and the community about how to better understand mental health problems, as well as substance use and addiction. Over the years, he has gained extensive experience in emergency and trauma, rural nursing, alcohol and other drug counselling, and psychiatric nursing across both the public and private sectors. He holds a masters of health science (mental health and addiction). Geoff is particularly fascinated by the impact that exercise, nutrition, community, meaning and purpose, and practices like yoga have on a person’s mental health, as well as living a simple life of reflection, contentment and wonderment. See Educator Profile