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Title: Processes in help seeking among amphetamine users who experience problems with drug taking
Author: Carruthers, Jayne
Awarding Body: University of Leicester
Current Institution: University of Leicester
Date of Award: 1997
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It has been recognised that amphetamine users who experience problems with drug taking rarely initiate or retain contact with services. Reasons for this have been attributed to a stereotyped view that drug services are orientated towards opiate users and therefore have little to offer other drug using populations who may wish to seek formal help. Amphetamine dependency is a growing problem in the United Kingdom and commentators suggest that services will have to begin to acknowledge the diverse clinical needs of this population. The research undertaken in this study focused on how amphetamine users sought help from a local community drug service. A qualitative research paradigm was used. This facilitated exploration of the process and action involved in help seeking and its associated behaviours. Interviews with amphetamine users were analysed using grounded theory. This was aimed at discovering the principle relationships between help seeking phenomena in the data. In the resulting account, a three-stage process of help seeking illustrated users' constructions of problematic drug use, help seeking needs and the impact of service contact on these. Related themes were identified around the development of problems, experiences of loss and helping encounters. These emphasised the personal and social sequelae of problematic drug taking. Unexpected hypotheses emerged about the role of personal identity and therapeutic relationships. The analysis focused on the conceptual development of help seeking. Theoretical, organisational and clinical implications emerged from the analysis. The need to develop a formal theory of help seeking was recognised. Findings suggested that information needs to be targeted at amphetamine users. Therapeutic context rather than content was highlighted by users. This major finding indicated that person focused approaches informed the general style of preferred engagement for users who sought and retained contact with the service.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Clin.Psy.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available