Testing and screening for alcoholism

man in a support groupDo you have a problem with alcohol? Are you drinking more than you should, or does your use of alcohol classify as “normal”? These are common questions, and in order to help answer them in a clinical fashion, a number of different testing options have been designed.

There are hundreds of different alcohol screening tests used by doctors and clinicians to identify an alcohol abuse or addiction disorder in patients. Depending upon the context of the screening (e.g., a doctor’s office, an emergency room visit, a psychiatrist’s office, etc.) and the patient in question, different tests may be more or less appropriate.

Some of the most commonly utilized alcohol screening tools include:

  • Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT). The AUDIT can identify an alcohol use issue experienced by the patient within the last year. A score of 8+ out of 10 is an indicator of harmful alcohol use.
  • CAGE. A four-question screening test that can help to identify an alcohol use disorder at any point in the person’s life. The name of the test comes from the questions that ask about cutting down, the annoyance of others, feelings of guilt, and if eye opener drinking is an issue.
  • T-ACE. Similar to and based upon the CAGE test, this test is comprised of four more questions to identify a range of alcohol issues, including prenatal drinking. The name comes from the questions that touch upon tolerance, being annoyed by others’ criticism of drinking, the need to cut down, and the eye opener issue.

At-home alcohol abuse questionnaires

Not everyone needs to go to the doctor in order to determine whether or not they have a problem with alcohol. Though undergoing alcohol screening in a medical setting can assist patients in getting a clinical diagnosis that will qualify them for insurance coverage for treatment, it is not a necessary step if the goal is to simply identify whether or not treatment is needed. A number of online questionnaires are available to help readers to determine whether or not their use of alcohol is becoming a serious issue. Some sample questions include:

  • Do you lie about how much you drink, how often you drink, or if you are under the influence?
  • Do you become angry when anyone questions your drinking habits?
  • Are you often late to work or call in sick because you are hungover?
  • Have you ever driven after drinking?
  • Have you ever been arrested for illegal behaviors under the influence?
  • Have you ever tried to moderate your drinking but been unsuccessful?
  • Do you find that you have to drink more and more in order to feel the effects?
  • Do you feel ill at ease if you are unable to drink or if you have to wait to get a drink?
  • Do you turn to alcohol to assist you in dealing with emotions like anger, happiness, grief, depression, or boredom?
  • Has your doctor expressed concern about your health due to the effects of your drinking?
  • Have your loved ones told you that they feel you drink too much, too often, or at inappropriate times?

Treatment can help you overcome alcohol abuse and addiction

If you are concerned that your drinking habits are becoming a problem but you are unable to stop drinking on your own, The Recovery Village can help. Call now for more information about our treatment services. Begin your path to recovery today.

Testing and Screening for Alcoholism
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