Do I have a Drinking / Drug Problem?

Many people with alcohol and other substance abuse problems spend a great deal of time explaining to themselves and others that they can control their usage when in fact their substance of choice is starting to control them.  If you find yourself justifying your usage or trying to convince yourself that you don’t have a problem, consider taking the following questionnaire. This questionnaire is completely confidential and is a compilation of the most commonly asked questions to identify possible problems with alcohol or drugs.

Check the items that are true for you.

I find myself thinking about or talking about my drug or alcohol experiences.
Family members have told me they think I have an alcohol or drug problem.
I have had arguments with family members and friends about my drinking and drug usage.
I have tried to quit or cut down on my drinking or drug usage.
I have had the shakes when going without a drink or using drugs.
I have missed work because of drinking or other drug use, particularly on Mondays.
I have had periods of time that I cannot remember.
I usually hide my alcohol or drug usage from my family and close friends so they do not know how much I am using.
I usually have a drink or use drugs upon awakening, before eating, or while at work.
I sometimes feel guilty or bad about my alcohol or drug usage.
I find myself making excuses about my drinking or drug usage.

If you have checked two items, you have the beginning of a problem with alcohol or drugs and are encouraged to call the Employee Assistance Program at 753-9191 for a confidential appointment.  If you checked more than three items, you have a serious problem with alcohol or drugs and are encouraged to set up an appointment with a substance abuse specialist for a more complete alcohol or drug usage assessment (see #1 below).  Our office can assist you in accessing your insurance substance abuse benefits and supporting you in your choice to be substance free. 

For employees who have decided to stop using substances and have been through detox, we will meet with you four to five times a week for the first 90 days while you are also attending Alcoholics Anonymous meetings every day.  Once you have completed the first 90 days without any substance, we will meet with you twice a week and then once a week to support your commitment to being substance free.

If you do not want to contact our office, there are organizations that can be helpful.

  1. For drug usage problems in the DeKalb area contact, the Ben Gordon Center at 815-756-4875. In the suburbs, contact Alexian Brothers Lake Cook (ABLC) Behavior Health Center in Arlington Heights at 1-800-432-5005 open 24 hours a day 7 days a week.  In the Rockford area, contact Rosecrance at 815-391-1000.  Many alcohol and substance abuse programs have informational meetings you can attend.
  1. In addition, AA is the most successful organization for helping people with drinking problems/substance abuse problems and has a 24 Hour Hotline 1-800-452-7990 that will tell you where AA meetings are held.  If you are interested in attending an open meeting, there is an open AA and Al-Anon discussion held at 312 E. Taylor in DeKalb on Wednesdays at 6:30 p.m.  In addition AA has a web site that will tell you about AA and their experiences helping people with alcoholism.

REMEMBER, to be admitted to any treatment program, you need to get pre-approval from you health insurance.  For the Quality Care Insurance, call 1-800-513-2611.  For an HMO, you must get a referral from your primary care physician.


For more information on this and other topics, please visit the WebMD website at
Please note that Northern Illinois University is not affiliated with WebMD and provides this link and any information contained within on an as is basis.