If you’re facing an alcohol-related offense, like DUI charges, underage drinking violation, or a court case, you may be subjected to an alcohol assessment. This test determines your level of intoxication. This article explains the process of alcohol assessment, factors considered during the process, and what you should do to avoid failing the test. To start, you may be wondering, what is an alcohol assessment?
Purpose of Alcohol Assessment and What to Expect
An alcohol assessment test determines if you have an alcohol use disorder and its severity. It also determines if there’s a potential dual diagnosis, alcohol impact in your life, and the components needed in your addiction treatment plan.
The goal is to determine if you have an addiction problem, and consequently develop a treatment plan to help you overcome your addiction. The process takes 60 to 90 minutes. A certified addiction specialist asks specific questions to screen for potential problems and then determines their nature and the necessary treatment. Typically, the process has four steps including:
- A screening to determine if you have an alcohol use problem
- An assessment to determine the severity of alcohol abuse
- A follow-up screening
- Referral to local treatment programs
6 Tips for Passing an Alcohol Assessment Test
1. Avoid Drinking At Least 2 Weeks Before Assessment
It’s crucial that you go to your assessment when clean. Even though this is an alcohol test, your assessor may test you for other drugs too. Drugs such as marijuana and other antidepressants take two weeks before they leave your system.
Breathalyzers and blood tests determine your blood alcohol concentration and these drugs can skew the results. Abstaining for two weeks will allow your body to detoxify and recover from any impairment caused by alcohol intake.
2. Check Out the Online Sample Questions
It’s helpful to have an idea of what to expect when you go in for an alcohol assessment test. You can take the available online self-evaluation questions for alcohol assessment. The common self-evaluation questions are the Michigan Alcohol Screen Test (MAST) and the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT). They mostly ask about your alcohol intake frequency,your drinking circumstances, and how drinking alcohol affects your obligations and people close to you.
3. Seek Legal Assistance Before Assessment
An attorney experienced in alcohol assessment can guide you on what to expect and how to answer the assessment questions. An experienced attorney can also help you understand the test’s procedures, inform you of your legal obligations and rights to avoid any mistake that can negatively impact the result, and safeguard your interests for a fair and impartial assessment procedure. Most states have online directories of free legal counsel if you’re unable to hire an attorney.
4. Know and Talk to Your References Ahead of Time
In most alcohol assessment tests, about two to three people from your home, work, or social life, will be interviewed about your alcohol and general conduct. You should, therefore, know and communicate with them beforehand to ensure that they truly understand you and can offer honest, positive accounts of your experiences.
Choose people who deeply understand your life and character. Friends, family and colleagues are ideal choices. Make sure if you openly discuss the specific reasons that may have led to the assessment with your references. This is to avoid any discrepancies possible during the interview.
5. Be Honest and Give Straightforward Answers
Lying or bending the truth during the assessment can be detrimental to your results if it is discovered by your assessor. It’s important that you and your referees be honest about your alcohol use and get the necessary professional help if needed. Keep your answers brief with fewer details for a quicker assessment progress. Concise answers ensure that key points are delivered with clarity and without ambiguity.
6. Seek Professional Help for Heavy Alcohol Detoxification
Detoxifying from heavy alcohol use at home can be a challenge to your physical, psychological, and emotional well-being. If you’ve consumed alcohol for a long time, your body becomes dependent on it and sudden withdrawal can lead to severe conditions like tremors and anxiety.
Seek medical supervision to ensure a safe and gradual detoxification process, prevent any possible complications, and get the necessary support you need for a successful recovery journey.
An alcohol assessment shows that you’re open to constructive criticism and that you take your situation seriously. It’s also essential in determining whether you’re an alcohol addict. If you’re found to have a risky future, you can address your substance use proactively and early enough. Be precise with your responses for an accurate assessment.