During the past year, deaths caused by drug and alcohol addiction have accelerated. Sometimes, finding the help you need to overcome drug and alcohol abuse can seem difficult.

The path to recovery doesn’t look the same for everyone. That’s why oftentimes, court-mandated steps toward recovery begin with an alcohol and drug evaluation.

If you were recently instructed to seek an alcohol and drug evaluation, you’re probably wondering what to expect. What steps are involved in a drug and alcohol evaluation? What will you learn?

Read on to learn more about drug and alcohol evaluations.

What Is an Alcohol and Drug Evaluation?

An alcohol and drug evaluation is often the first step in court-mandated recovery. After receiving, for example, a DUI or failing a drug or alcohol test at work, you may be required to fulfill an alcohol and drug evaluation.

The purpose of an alcohol and drug evaluation is to assess the nature of your substance abuse. This allows your substance abuse professional to determine the next best steps for recovery or substance use management.

What Information Is Covered on the Questionnaire?

After scheduling your alcohol and drug evaluation, you will be asked to fill out a questionnaire. This questionnaire is viewed only but your substance abuse professional and will be used as a reference point during your in-person interview.

Your questionnaire may vary based on the nature of your court mandate. However, questions usually cover topics like your use of various substances including frequency and history. You may also be asked to provide information about your medical record and your family’s history of substance abuse, if relevant.

Finally, the questionnaire will help your substance abuse professional determine whether or not any comorbidities are in play. For example, you may answer questions about how substance abuse has affected things like finances, relationships, and work. You may also be asked about any triggers that relate to your substance abuse, which can help your substance abuse professional evaluate the presence of things like anxiety or depression.

What Documents Should You Bring to Your Evaluation?

If you are completing an alcohol and drug evaluation in relation to a recent arrest, you may need to bring certain documents. These may include:

  • Documents of your arrest, including tickets, incident reports, and probation documents
  • Your criminal history report, if one exists
  • 7-year motor vehicle report for DUIs

If you’re not sure if you need to bring any documents to your evaluation, contact us and we will go over this with you.

What Occurs During the Evaluation Interview?

After completing the questionnaire, you will also complete an in-person interview with your substance abuse professional. As we mentioned earlier, your substance abuse professional will use your questionnaire as a reference point throughout the interview.

The purpose of the in-purpose interview is to start delving a little deeper into your relationship with alcohol and/or drugs. This allows your substance abuse professional to consider the best possible steps toward recovery for you.

Remember, substance abuse professionals are certified counselors. They are not going to judge you or share your personal information inappropriately. Being as open and honest as possible is the best way to find recovery programs that meet your individual needs.

How Do Substance Abuse Professionals Determine the Next Steps?

Substance abuse professionals make many considerations when deciding on the next best steps for you. They are familiar with any requirements you may need to meet to satisfy your court mandate and/or return-to-work duties. They also evaluate the nature and depth of your substance abuse to determine which of the many programs out there could help you recover.

Substance abuse professionals also take into account your financial situation and day-to-day obligations. They work hard to ensure that they aren’t placing undo burdens on your finances and your schedule. For example, a substance abuse professional will look at programs closest to your home or place of work.

What Happens After an Alcohol and Drug Evaluation?

As we’ve mentioned, the purpose of an alcohol and drug evaluation is to determine what your next steps should be. Your substance abuse professional will provide the court or your employer with their assessment. You will then be expected to complete any related steps, which could include completing recovery programs or educational classes.

After completing these steps, you will likely be asked to return for a follow-up evaluation. This allows your substance abuse professional to gauge the success you’ve found with these programs. It also allows them to consider the necessity of any aftercare or follow-up programs.

Some of the most common aftercare programs include outpatient rehab, 12-step recovery programs, sober living, and long-term counseling. Once again, your substance abuse professional will consider your financial situation and day-to-day obligations before recommending specific aftercare programs.

In some instances, you may have to complete additional programs or classes to satisfy the court or your employer. If this is the case, your substance abuse professional will help you navigate these additional steps so that you can get back to work or take care of any court-mandated responsibilities ASAP.

Schedule Your Alcohol and Drug Evaluation With Diversion Center

Completing an alcohol and drug evaluation is often a necessary part of navigating court orders or getting back to work. If you have recently been assigned an alcohol and drug evaluation, the Diversion Center is here to help. Our substance abuse professionals are here to help you get started on your recovery process right away.

We have locations all over the Atlanta metropolitan area. To schedule your evaluation, contact us today and we will get you set up at the location nearest you.