Substance use disorder assessment
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Do you have a drinking problem?

Find out for yourself with our interactive test.

We developed this test so you can confidentially see if you have a drinking problem. The test will help you gauge if you have a drinking problem or not based on diagnostic criteria for evaluating alcohol use disorders. To determine whether you meet diagnostic criteria for mild, moderate, or severe AUD, complete the following questions about your alcohol use over the past year:

AUD Assessment

1. Were there times when you drank more, or for a longer period, than you planned?
2. Did you try – unsuccessfully – to cut down or quit drinking?
3. Did you spend time managing the effects of drinking, such as hangovers or feeling sick?
4. Have you experienced strong cravings for alcohol?
5. Has drinking had a negative impact on your home, work, or education?
6. If you answered yes to question (5), did you keep drinking anyway?
7. Have you stopped activities you used to love, in order to drink – or manage hangovers – instead?
8. Have you engaged in risky behavior, such as driving under the influence?
9. Have you kept drinking even though it causes physical, psychological, and emotional discomfort?
10. Have you had to drink more to get the same effect?
11. Have you had a drink to avoid symptoms such as trouble sleeping, shakiness, anxiety, irritability, or depression?

Alcoholism Test Results

  • If you answer yes to 2-3 questions, you meet the criteria for mild AUD.
  • If you answer yes to 4-5 questions, you meet the criteria for moderate AUD.
  • If you answer yes to 6 or more questions, you meet the criteria for severe AUD.

We share this here to help you understand your level of risk, understand how addiction professionals arrive at a diagnosis for AUD, and help you decide if you need to seek treatment for your alcohol use.

What should you do based on your drinking self-assessment results?

If you have a mild, moderate, or severe alcohol use disorder, there are different paths towards health and wellness based on the stage of alcohol use disorder that you are experiencing.

The severity of the disorder, from mild to moderate to severe, is determined by the number of symptoms you have. The more symptoms, the more severe the disorder. Here are the general steps that you should follow:

1. Acknowledge the problem: The first step towards overcoming any addiction is admitting to yourself that you have a problem. This can often be the most difficult step because it requires self-reflection and acknowledgment of a serious issue.

2. Reach out for support: If you’re comfortable, talk to people you trust about your struggle. This could be friends, family, or even online support groups. Having a support network can make a big difference in your recovery process.

3. Seek professional help: This can involve different types of professionals including primary care physicians, psychiatrists, psychologists, or addiction counselors.

  • Primary care physicians can help with initial diagnosis and referral to a specialist if necessary. They can also monitor your physical health as you navigate recovery.
  • Psychiatrists and psychologists can provide cognitive-behavioral therapy or other types of therapy that can help you understand the reasons behind your alcohol use, develop healthier coping strategies, and find more effective ways to manage stress.
  • Addiction counselors can provide education, counseling, and support during your recovery. They can also connect you with support groups or other resources in your community.

4. Consider treatment options: Depending on the severity of your AUD, different treatment options might be suggested by professionals.

  • Outpatient treatment: This typically involves regular therapy sessions with a professional while you live at home. This is often a good option for those with less severe AUD or those who have significant work or family responsibilities.
  • Inpatient treatment or rehab: This involves staying at a treatment facility for a period of time. Inpatient rehab provides a structured environment and more intensive support, which can be particularly helpful for those with severe AUD or those who have not been able to maintain sobriety in outpatient treatment.
  • Medication: Some medications can help reduce cravings for alcohol and/or help manage withdrawal symptoms. A healthcare professional can discuss these options with you.
  • Support groups: Groups like Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) can provide peer support and a structured approach to recovery.

5. Make lifestyle changes: Along with professional treatment, making lifestyle changes can support recovery. This can include things like developing healthier coping mechanisms, finding new hobbies or activities to replace the time spent drinking, exercising regularly, and eating a healthy diet.

Remember that recovery often involves setbacks, and it’s important to not get too discouraged if you have a relapse. Instead, see it as a chance to learn and adjust your recovery plan. Most importantly, don’t hesitate to ask for help. AUD is a serious but treatable disorder, and there are many resources available to help you overcome it.

Lastly, if you are experiencing withdrawal symptoms from alcohol, it is very important to seek medical attention as alcohol withdrawal can be life-threatening. Don’t attempt to detox on your own. Professionals can provide a safe and comfortable environment to manage withdrawal symptoms.

Please consult with a healthcare professional who can provide guidance based on your specific circumstances. The information above should be used as a guide and does not replace professional medical advice.

What is an Alcohol Use Disorder Identification Test?

An Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test is a simple and effective method of screening for unhealthy alcohol use, defined as risky or hazardous consumption or any alcohol use disorder.

Source: AUDIT

Should you get treatment for alcohol use disorder?

Yes, if you or someone you know is struggling with alcohol use disorder (AUD), it is highly recommended to seek professional help. AUD is a chronic relapsing brain disease characterized by an impaired ability to stop or control alcohol use despite adverse social, occupational, or health consequences. It can have serious impacts on a person’s physical and mental health, relationships, and overall quality of life.

Treatment for AUD can take many forms and what works best can vary depending on the individual. Options can include:

  1. Detoxification and Withdrawal: Medical Detox For Alcohol is often the first step in treatment, where you stop drinking and are monitored for withdrawal symptoms.
  2. Counseling: This can be individual or group therapy. Cognitive-behavioral therapy, motivational enhancement therapy, and marital and family counseling have been found to be effective.
  3. Medication: Certain medications can help reduce heavy drinking and increase the number of days of abstinence. These include Naltrexone, Acamprosate, and Disulfiram.
  4. Support Groups: Groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) can provide community and peer support.
  5. Treatment Programs: These can be inpatient or outpatient and often combine multiple types of treatment.

Remember, it’s important to consult with a healthcare professional to discuss the best treatment options for your specific situation. If you’re unsure where to start, a good first step can be reaching out to your primary care doctor. They can provide an initial assessment and referral to appropriate resources.