Gender differences in psychosocial complexity for a cohort of adolescents attending youth-specific substance abuse services

Penelope F. Mitchell, Jozica J. Kutin, Kathryn Daley, David Best, Andrew J. Bruun

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)


This study examines gender differences in the characteristics of young people (N = 1000) attending alcohol and other drug (AOD) services in the state of Victoria, Australia. Females demonstrate levels of substance use that are at least as high, and perhaps more harmful than that of males. Our data add to a growing base of evidence that young women attending youth AOD services experience additional psychosocial problems at higher rates than their male counterparts. This evidence is now fairly consistent in regard to mental health problems, self-injury, suicide attempts, and homelessness. Findings from this study further suggest that the gender imbalance may extend to child protection involvement, family conflict and disconnection, access to social support, and exposure to neglect and abuse.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)34-43
Number of pages10
JournalChildren and Youth Services Review
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Adolescents
  • Census
  • Gender differences
  • Psychosocial complexity
  • Substance abuse services
  • Young people

Cite this