Have you got a drink problem?

Alcohol causes all sorts of different problems to different people in different ways - There's no single entity as 'the drink problem', 'alcoholism' or 'an alcoholic'.

So we'll have to look at a wide range of things to get a good idea about where you fit in.

A good place to start is to ask yourself the following questions…

The effect of your drinking on your life

Is your drinking causing you problems with:

The way you drink

Control over your drinking

Finally, is it worth it..?


I don't think you need me to interpret your answers. But please don't think that answering no to any of them means you haven't got a problem. Answering yes to any of these is cause for concern.

What most of us do when faced with problems that we've created is to minimise the significance of our role in it. Maybe blaming other factors or even other people. It's a psychological self-defence mechanism that drinkers in particular often use.

So it might be a good idea to ask someone who knows you well what they think your answers should be.

The Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test

If you'd rather tick boxes and get a score that tells you if you have a drink problem, then there are a couple of excellent ones. These have been carefully designed and tested to come up with accurate results - as long as you answer honestly.

The first one is the AUDIT questionnaire (The Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test), which you can complete online here.

It'll indicate if your drinking is:

The Severity of Alcohol Dependence Questionnaire

You can complete the SADQ on this page. - it digs deeper to find out the degree of dependence on alcohol. It's routinely used to predict the need for medication in alcohol detox.

This information & advice in this guide is primarily for dependent drinkers - but there's advice in here for anyone who wants to stop drinking.

Read more about alcohol dependence here.