A self-test to determine if you might have an Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD) can help you assess your drinking habits and their impact on your life. However, it’s important to remember that a self-test cannot replace professional diagnosis. If you’re concerned about your drinking, it’s best to seek advice from a healthcare professional. Here’s a simple self-test based on common signs and symptoms of AUD:
Please answer ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ to the following questions:
- Drinking More/Longer Than Intended: Have you often found that when you start drinking, you end up drinking much more or for a longer time than you were planning to?
- Unsuccessful Attempts to Cut Down: Have you more than once wanted to cut down or stop drinking but found you couldn’t?
- Time Spent: Do you spend a lot of time drinking, being sick, or getting over the aftereffects?
- Craving: Do you experience a strong need or urge to drink?
- Impact on Responsibilities: Has drinking or being sick from drinking often interfered with taking care of your home or family, or caused job troubles or school problems?
- Continued Use Despite Problems: Have you continued to drink even though it was causing trouble with your family or friends?
- Giving Up or Cutting Back on Activities: Have you given up or cut back on activities that were important or interesting to you, or gave you pleasure, in order to drink?
- Risky Situations: Have you more than once gotten into situations while or after drinking that increased your chances of getting hurt (such as driving, swimming, using machinery, walking in a dangerous area, or having unsafe sex)?
- Continued Use Despite Health Problems: Have you continued to drink even though it was making you feel depressed or anxious or adding to another health problem, or after having had a memory blackout?
- Tolerance: Do you have to drink much more than you once did to get the effect you want, or found that your usual number of drinks had much less effect than before?
- Withdrawal: When the effects of alcohol were wearing off, have you had withdrawal symptoms, such as trouble sleeping, shakiness, irritability, anxiety, depression, restlessness, nausea, or sweating? Or have you sensed things that were not there?
- 0-2 “Yes” Answers: Low likelihood of AUD.
- 3-5 “Yes” Answers: Moderate indication of AUD. Consider discussing your drinking habits with a healthcare professional.
- 6 or more “Yes” Answers: Strong indication of AUD. Professional assessment and possibly treatment are recommended.
This test is based on the criteria from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) used by healthcare professionals. It’s not a diagnosis but can be a helpful tool in deciding whether to seek further evaluation. If you’re concerned about your or someone else’s drinking habits, reaching out for professional help is the most effective step.