When and Why You Need an Alcohol and Drug Evaluation

If you use alcohol or drugs daily and feel you can’t function without it, you may have a dependence. Substance use disorder is nothing to take lightly; it can overtake your life. An alcohol and drug evaluation can determine whether you have an addiction problem and how you can get help. This is when and why you need one.


What Is an Alcohol and Drug Evaluation?


An alcohol and drug evaluation involves professional assessment to assess a person’s level of substance use disorder (SUD). It involves a comprehensive review of their history of abusing alcohol or drugs, their current use, and whether they have a predisposition for SUD. For example, if there is a family history of alcohol or drug abuse, the evaluation can assess whether the individual has a higher risk. Their mental health is a factor that can also determine why they turned to substances in the first place.


Situations When an Alcohol and Drug Evaluation Is Done


Alcohol and drug evaluations can be done in certain situations. Sometimes, they’re performed for job-related purposes as certain industries require them. They can also be court-ordered after a person is arrested on charges of driving under the influence (DUI) or if someone has failed a drug test.


An alcohol and drug evaluation can also be voluntary. Living with substance use disorder can be consuming and cause you to have trouble in your daily life. If it interferes with your job, education, or interpersonal relationships, an evaluation can give you peace of mind and insight into the level of treatment you need.


How Can Evaluations Detect Potential Substance Use Disorder?


When performed early on, an evaluation can detect whether a person has a substance use disorder or is at risk of developing one. Instead of testing for drug or alcohol levels in the blood, urine, or hair, alcohol and drug evaluations are done through interviews with a professional evaluator. Points considered include behaviors, personal, family, and medical history and mental health conditions.


Once the evaluator has all the information they need, they can assess whether the person has a substance use disorder. This can help determine the right treatment plan to get clean and sober.


How Evaluations Impact Employment and Professional Licenses


Alcohol and drug evaluations that detect SUD early can benefit a person in more ways than one. In addition to allowing them to seek treatment sooner, it can preserve their employment and professional license. Being proactive and taking control of your health immediately shows your employer that you’re responsible and serious about getting help.


What to Expect After an Alcohol and Drug Evaluation


After an alcohol and drug evaluation, the evaluator determines the appropriate next steps to take. If the person’s employer court-ordered or recommended the assessment, they will be notified. The individual may be ordered into a treatment program, which may consist of detox, rehab, educational courses, and counseling.


After completing the requirements, the person might undergo a follow-up evaluation. This is to determine their progress and whether additional help is necessary.


An alcohol and drug evaluation can be the start of your journey toward sobriety. It lets you know where you stand so you can take your life back.