Am I An Alcoholic? – Self Assessment Quiz
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Alcohol use disorder (AUD) is a serious and dangerous disease that causes various emotional, physical, and mental health issues. Aside from the addicted individual, it can also affect their entire family, friend circle, or the community they live in. If you suspect that you or your loved one may be abusing alcohol, you should consider taking steps to determine the severity of potential addiction and inform yourself about possible treatment options.1
Alcohol assessment is an essential tool in diagnosing alcohol use disorder (AUD) and a first step that may lead to successful treatment and lasting recovery. There are several types of alcohol assessment approaches and tools, and they’re not equally detailed and precise.2
Self-assessment questionnaires are not a definitive diagnosis, but they can raise awareness of one’s drinking habits to determine how serious the issue is and can usually quite accurately point to alcohol addiction. By filling out one or several different types of self-assessment quizzes, the individual who’s having alcohol abuse issues or a concerned loved one can get a quite accurate idea if professional treatment is necessary.2
What Is an Alcohol Assessment?
Alcohol abuse assessment can be done in several ways to evaluate the severity of an individual’s drinking problem and conclude what kind of treatment is necessary. The most accurate assessment is done by substance abuse and mental health experts, but self-assessment questionnaires can also be a quite helpful tool to determine one’s next steps.3
Alcohol self-assessment tests are not a final diagnosis but can help you make the first step toward identifying a potential drinking problem, and whether there’s a reason for concern and to seek help. They are anonymous so it’s in your best interest to answer all questions truthfully.2
To get a general sense of your drinking habits, the topics that these questionnaires cover include the amount and frequency of alcohol use, as well as its consequences to one’s physical and mental health, and relationships with other people in their life. These alcohol assessment questions and the results you get can:1, 4
- Help you understand your relationship with alcohol
- Determine the severity or level of alcohol abuse.
- Helps you recognize the signs of addiction
- Learn about the short and long-term effects of prolonged alcohol abuse
- Find out about ways and approaches to help you stop drinking.
- Find the necessary help, support, and appropriate treatment program.
What Are the Signs of an Alcohol Use Disorder?
Some people struggle with alcohol abuse issues without realizing or wanting to admit that they might have a problem and might need help. The most common signs that may point to an alcohol use disorder commonly include:2, 5
- Drinking for longer periods or larger amounts of alcohol than intended.
- Drinking to relax, relieve stress, or other unpleasant emotions.
- Neglecting personal or professional commitment and obligations.
- Drinking in risky/dangerous situations.
- Experiencing memory loss or blackouts.
- Not being able to control or stop alcohol consumption despite negative consequences.
- Feeling intense cravings or urges to consume alcohol.
- Being unable to stop or cut down alcohol intake.
There are also dangerous physical symptoms and health consequences to be mindful of, as they may lead to a large number of serious illnesses that include liver problems like cirrhosis, high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, digestive problems, and multiple types of cancer. Overconsumption of alcohol, particularly in a brief period of time may even lead to life-threatening situations, like alcohol poisoning or car accidents.5
What Are the Methods Used for Alcohol Use Self-assessment?
The most common methods used for self-assessment are several types of questionnaires, containing different numbers of questions that can help you get a general idea of your relationship with alcohol and push you toward getting professional help if needed. The most accurate and commonly used alcohol assessment tests can be found online and they are:2
- Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT) is an AUD detection tool, developed by the world health organization (WHO). Answers to 10 questions of the test point to potential alcohol abuse problems.6
This is one of the most widely used alcohol screening tests in the world. It is used by healthcare professionals, but it may also be used as a self-assessment test as it takes only a few minutes to complete. It can help identify potential alcohol dependence, alcohol intake, and harmful consequences of excessive drinking.6
- Michigan Alcohol Screening Test (MAST) is also one of the oldest and most used screening tools. It is considered to be the most accurate and effective test for identifying alcohol dependence. The questionnaire covers patients’ self-appraisal of issues related to their drinking habits.7
- Cut Down Annoyed, Guilty, Eye-opener (CAGE) test consists of only four yes or no questions and uses a scoring method that is meant to determine if there’s an alcohol abuse problem that requires professional help. There is also an adapted version that includes drug use too.8
If you’re wondering what an alcohol self-assessment test looks like, or would like to get a better general idea of your drinking habits, you can consider some of the following questions and think about how they apply to you and your drinking habits:2
Am I An Alcoholic? Start Your Test Here
If you or your loved one answers “yes” to 3 or more questions in the list below, you may be suffering from an alcohol use disorder:6,7
- Do you feel guilty about your drinking habits and behavior?
- Do you ever have trouble remembering parts of your evening after you wake up the next day, after drinking?
- Do you need larger quantities of alcohol to achieve the effects you’ve felt before?
- Do you spend considerable time using or recovering from alcohol?
- Do you get aggressive or violent when you drink?
- Have your drinking habits ever created a problem in your relationships with family, friends, or a romantic partner?
- Have you ever lost a friend or a romantic partner because of your drinking?
- Did you ever get into trouble at work or lost your job?
- Has drinking ever caused you to neglect your family, work, or school obligations?
- Do you often cancel plans or abandon social, and professional activities because of your alcohol use?
- Do you often drink before noon?
- Have you ever been diagnosed with liver problems, like cirrhosis?
- Have you ever experienced withdrawal symptoms like severe shaking, or hallucinations (visual or auditory) when you attempt to cut back on your drinking?
- Have you ever been hospitalized because of your drinking?
- Do you keep using alcohol knowing it worsens your physical or mental health issues?
- Has drinking ever caused you to be hospitalized in a psychiatric ward?
- Have you ever been arrested while driving under influence?
- Have you ever been arrested or detained for your behavior while drinking?
What Should I Do Next After an Alcohol Self-Assessment Test?
Depending on the type of test you take, scoring and result suggest various levels of alcohol dependence:2
- When it comes to the AUDIT test, the range of scores is 0-40; a score of 8-14 points to harmful alcohol use, while 15 points or more indicate a more severe alcohol abuse problem or dependence.9
- With the MAST test, more than 6 ‘yes’ answers indicate some level of dangerous drinking or alcohol dependence.7
- The CAGE test consists of only four questions so only one or two positive answers point to a clinically significant level of alcohol abuse.8
Further professional evaluation by substance abuse experts is highly recommended in this case, particularly if you answered yes to more than half of the questions, as this points to severely hazardous drinking and dependence.2
Alcohol Addiction Treatment Options
Depending on the severity of your addiction as determined by substance abuse specialists, as well as your particular circumstances and needs, you might have to consider some of the available treatment options:3, 4, 10
- Detox is the first step of addiction treatment. Depending on the severity of physical dependence it can last for 2-3 days, up to a week. If severe or life-threatening withdrawal symptoms are expected it’s medically monitored, and appropriate pharmacotherapy is used to ease the symptoms and prevent any dangerous consequences.
- Inpatient program requires a stay at the rehab facility. This type of program is also called a residential or live-in program and can be short-term or long-term, depending on the severity of the addiction and the personal preferences and circumstances of each patient.
- Outpatient therapy program allows the patient to live at home while they go through treatment. This is a good option for those patients who can’t take time off from work or family responsibilities. There’s also the option of an intensive outpatient program for those with more severe alcohol dependency problems.
- Counseling or psychotherapy is generally part of every addiction treatment program. They help patients get to the underlying causes of their alcohol abuse and address potential mental health issues which co-occur with alcohol addiction in about 50% of the cases.
- Support groups are available in inpatient and outpatient programs, and the patient can keep attending them as a form of aftercare when they complete the recommended treatment. They provide the patient with a sense of community and fellowship and help maintain sobriety and lower the chance of relapse.
How to Get Help for My Alcohol Addiction?
The first step toward getting appropriate alcohol addiction treatment usually starts with your primary care physician. They can perform an initial evaluation and refer you to appropriate specialists. A more thorough evaluation is performed by mental health professionals and addiction specialists, who will then recommend a suitable recovery program.1
If you don’t feel ready to talk to your doctor yet or are unsure about the severity of your alcohol consumption issues, you can call one of the free and confidential hotlines and get all the necessary information and referral to local substance abuse centers and alcohol assessment near you. You can reach out to:1
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) National Helpline: 1-800-662-HELP (4357).11
- National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence (NCADD) to connect you with local resources.12
You can also contact the American Addiction Centers, (AAC) 24/7 helpline. A highly trained and compassionate team of admissions navigators will listen to your story and connect you to suitable rehab centers near you. They can also help find a center that can admit you as soon as possible if you’re experiencing an acute crisis and feel like you should start your treatment immediately. You can check your insurance benefits online or one of the AAC’s admission navigators can verify your insurance during the call.
If you notice any of the symptoms of alcohol poisoning or overdose, someone’s life might be in danger. Addiction hotlines are not equipped to deal with emergencies, so dial 911 for immediate assistance in such cases.13
Frequently Asked Questions