Am I Addicted to Drugs or Alcohol?

“Am I addicted to drugs or alcohol?” If you’re asking yourself this important question, you’ve come to the right place for answers. Here’s how to know.

Drug and alcohol abuse can lead you to wonder, Am I addicted to drugs? or Am I addicted to alcohol? Before you can determine the answer to the question, Do I have an addiction problem? is to understand the differences between abuse, addiction, and dependence.

What is Drug and Alcohol Abuse?

Drug and alcohol abuse are the act of using drugs or alcohol in a way that causes problems for you. These problems may be related to the law, your relationships, your finances, or your health and safety.  Drug abuse is not the same as addiction or dependence, but you have to abuse drugs in order to wonder, am I addicted to drugs?

Am I Addicted to Drugs or Alcohol?

If you’re addicted to drugs or alcohol, you won’t be able to stop using even though your use is causing problems in your life. Addiction is characterized by chronic drug or alcohol use despite negative consequences.

Addiction develops due to changes in brain function and structure that results from chronic drug or alcohol abuse. Your brain makes ironclad connections between using and the pleasure it produces, and this leads to cravings for drugs or alcohol. These cravings are extremely intense, and you’ll do just about anything to get ahold of the substance. When you begin to compulsively seek out your substance and use it despite the problems it causes, you’ll probably start to wonder, am I addicted to drugs or alcohol? At this point, you probably realize you may have a problem, but you may not know what to do about it.

Am I Dependent on Drugs or Alcohol?

Addiction and dependence are not the same thing, although they most often occur together. Dependence is characterized by withdrawal symptoms that set in when you stop using drugs or alcohol.

When you chronically abuse drugs or alcohol, your brain changes the way it functions in order to compensate for the substance. This leads to tolerance, which means you need larger doses to get the same effects. At some point, your brain function may shift, and it will now function more comfortably when the substance is in your body than when it’s not. Then, when you stop using, normal brain function rebounds, and this causes the onset of withdrawal symptoms.

Do I Have An Addiction Problem? Take This Drug and Alcohol Addiction Quiz

Nowadays, drug and alcohol abuse, addiction, and dependence are diagnosed as a “substance use disorder” using 11 criteria. Depending on how many criteria you answer “yes” to, your substance use disorder will be classified as mild, moderate, or severe.

This drug and alcohol addiction quiz will help you determine the answer to the question, am I addicted to alcohol or drugs? It will tell you whether you might have a substance use disorder and whether it’s mild, moderate, or severe. If you answer “yes” to two or three questions, it’s considered mild. If you answer “yes” to four to five, it’s considered moderate, and six to seven is considered severe.

In the past 12 months, have you:

  1. Taken drugs or alcohol in larger amounts and for longer periods of time than you intended?
  2. Wanted to cut down or quit but found that you couldn’t?
  3. Spent a lot of time obtaining, using, and recovering from using the substance?
  4. Experienced cravings for the substance?
  5. Neglected duties at home, work, or school as a result of your use?
  6. Continued using drugs or alcohol even though it was causing problems with your relationships?
  7. Lost interest in activities you used to enjoy?
  8. Found yourself in risky situations due to obtaining drugs or alcohol or while under the influence?
  9. Continued using drugs or alcohol even though it was causing problems for your physical or mental health and wellbeing?
  10. Needed increasingly higher doses of the substance in order to get the same effects?
  11. Experienced withdrawal symptoms when you stopped using drugs or alcohol?

Treatment Works

Whether you have a mild, moderate, or severe substance use disorder, treatment can help you recover from dependence and addiction. Treatment works for most people who engage in it, and it can work for you, too. Better Addiction Care can help you find a high quality treatment program that will help you overcome the addiction and find joy, purpose, and meaning in life again. Contact us today at 1-800-429-7690, and let us help you get started on the road to a happier, healthier life.