Peltoniemi’s theoretical specialization involves the methodology of critical social work. Her personal studies combine expertise and experiential knowledge, drug addiction and emotional trauma, and social work and psychotherapy.
“A normal drug addict?” (2011) is an award-winning study about Peltoniemi’s own drug addiction, quality treatment and recovery. A further study, “As though I would not exist – an autoethnography of emotional trauma and recovery” (2017) illuminates complex traumatization and the resulting structural dissociation of the personality as underlying factors in drug addiction. An irrational life story is made comprehensible and the therapeutic processes and recovery are given concrete expression in conversations with therapists. Autoethnography provides information about the progression and preconditions of a successful therapeutic process as well as the integration of different parts of the personality in a traumatized individual. “The study provides a fresh perspective for psychotherapy and work with substance abusers.” (Diak: 2017)