It is very easy to minimize the severity of a substance abuse issue, and until an addict overcomes denial, the addiction persists and frequently deepens. Overcoming denial is not as easy as asking “Am I in denial about my substance use?” Fortunately, the American Psychiatric Association (APA) developed a simple seven question test so you can assess whether you are an addict or not. If you answer the following questions honestly, you can easily determine if you have a problem.
The American Psychological Association Addiction Test
- 1. Do you have a tolerance – does it take more than it did before to feel the same high?
- 2. After you try to stop, do you ever feel withdrawal symptoms, or do you ever take a different drug to eliminate feelings of withdrawal?
- 3. Do you ever use more that you had meant to in a session?
- 4. Have you ever tried to quit or cut down, and found that you were unable to?
- 5. Do you spend much of your time thinking about drugs or alcohol, using or recovering from drugs or alcohol (a preoccupation)?
- 6. Have you stopped doing things you used to enjoy, because of your alcohol or drug use?
- 7. Do you continue to use alcohol or drugs even after you notice adverse consequences of your use?
If you answered yes to 2 or less of the questions, you probably suffer from a chemical abuse problem and should consider speaking to someone about your behavior. If you answered yes to three or more of the questions, you are medically classified as chemically dependent (addicted) and should seek professional help with an alcohol or drug abuse treatment program.
Don’t deny your problem. It’s easy to shrug off the concerns of others or tell yourself everything is fine. The questions above are straightforward and hard to dispute. As you were answering them, you may have recalled specific instances of abuse. Perhaps, a quick drink with a friend became hours spent ordering one drink after another. Maybe you were not able to pay your household bills because you had spent the money on your substance abuse. Ignoring these and other substance problems or down playing their severity will only make your situation worse. There is no need for you to hit “rock bottom” before getting help. Save you and your loved ones from the suffering addiction causes and seek help now.
Drug and alcohol treatment programs help you face your addiction and develop a path to sustainable recovery. While the process is difficult, overcoming denial is the hardest part. It is possible to defeat your addiction and live a positive life. Call Bradford today to set up a free addiction consultation.