Parental substance misuse can result in a considerable number of negative effects on the family. However, it is incredibly hard to calculate how many children and other family members might be affected. There is also growing evidence that some children appear to be more resilient than others to the negative impact of parental substance misuse. There is a need to investigate how these general statements relate to parental substance misuse across Scotland, a topic that has been given priority status by the Scottish Executive, and other key organisations. There is also a need to ensure that recent national and international literature and policy initiatives inform research, practice and policy across Scotland.
Thus, the Scottish Executive (Substance Misuse Research Team) commissioned this scoping review which was undertaken during 2005. The key aims of this review were to scope how much literature there is on the topic of parental substance misuse, and then to further scope the literature to summarise key themes and gaps arising from the literature, to collate knowledge and evidence on effective practice, and to identify priorities for future work.