Putting together the pieces: Responding to trauma and substance use


If you are

  • working with clients with trauma and alcohol and other drug issues 
  • wanting to effectively respond to a client’s trauma 
  • just interested in the issue of trauma

then this resource is written for you.

Putting together the pieces is an evidenced based resource that provides workers with the practical skills and knowledge to assist a client to work with their trauma issues within an alcohol and other drug context.

It is packed with practical tips based on the latest thinking and reseach over its 50 pages.

Putting Together the Pieces is written for clinicians in the AOD sector, but will be useful for anyone working with clients who experience both trauma and substance use issues. This includes mental health workers as well as people who work with refugees, asylum seekers, gamblers and anyone who has experienced natural disasters and other forms of loss. It provides AOD workers with the information that will assist them to support clients to address trauma issues within a treatment context. These include:

  • Understanding trauma, its effects and how it relates to AOD use;
  • Screening for trauma-related mental health disorders and assessing for the symptoms associated with trauma;
  • Issues related to creating a safe treatment setting and establishing rapport when working with trauma;
  • How to recognise guilt, shame and secrecy associated with the negative consequences of traumatic experiences;
  • The importance of a staged approach to treatment of trauma;
  • Interventions and tools for treating co-morbid issues; Knowing when to refer and how to support transitions between services;
  • The importance of self-care and avoiding vicarious trauma.

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