How Do You Get a Drug or Alcohol Assessment in Colorado?

A drug or alcohol assessment in Colorado is a method that is used to assess the extent of an individual’s use, misuse, and abuse of drugs or alcohol. It is also a tool that can help in creating the most optimal treatment plan. Assessments are often used by employers, attorneys, families, and legal authorities when substance abuse is suspected. If you are looking for a Colorado addiction treatment center near Denver, call us today!

A drug or alcohol assessment that’s mandated by the court is the result of legal issues, such as a drug or alcohol-related arrest. In other cases, it may be used because a loved one is concerned about potential substance use problems. Regardless, a drug or alcohol assessment in Colorado can be a crucial first step toward addiction recovery.

Following a drug or alcohol evaluation in Colorado, an effective treatment plan will be created for the affected individual. The evaluation will serve as a basis of information that’ll help us tailor this plan to your specific needs. Here at Footprints to Recovery, we can help you navigate through a drug or alcohol assessment for personal or court purposes. 

What is a Drug or Alcohol Assessment?

Substance abuse evaluations are split into two different parts. As stated by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), the sections of a substance abuse evaluation consist of screening and an assessment.

Substance Abuse Screening

Substance abuse screening assesses an individual’s substance use patterns to determine whether or not there’s the potential of an abuse disorder being present. There are different types of screening, and the result of screening is generally yes (positive) or no (negative). 

If the answer is yes (positive), treatment will most likely need to be created for the recovering individual. Different variations of screenings for substance abuse include:

  • Substance Abuse Subtle Screening Inventory (SASSI) – a self-report that is fairly simple to make, administer, and score.
  • CAGE questionnaire – This screening method gauges an individual’s substance misuse in four simple questions. This tool is very brief and to-the-point, which emphasizes the need for the affected individual to be honest when answering the questions. 
  • BSTAD (Brief Screener for Alcohol, Tobacco, and Other Drugs) –This method is used for teens and adolescents. This can be taken online. 
  • TAPS (Tobacco, Alcohol, and Other Drugs – This tool offers a more in-depth screen, online or face to face administration, as well as the evaluation of past and current substance use habits. 

It is worth noting that the screening part of the process is not the same as an assessment. Screening for drug and alcohol use is one of many tools that is used to assess whether or not an assessment is necessary.

Drug or Alcohol Assessment

The drug or alcohol assessment process is more thorough than screening. This is a way to further diagnose and assess the results of the screening. These results are then used to create a personalized treatment plan for the individual if deemed necessary. 

Assessments will be used to gain a thorough history of the affected individual. Drug or alcohol assessments in Colorado will cover previous substance use patterns, mental health, physical health, medical history, family history, and personal history. 

Remember, there’s no reason to be nervous about a drug or alcohol assessment! The drug or alcohol assessment is merely a way to find out more about your or a loved one’s addiction.

Examples of questions you may be asked include:

  • When using drugs or drinking, do you neglect to eat sufficiently?
  • Do you use or drink by yourself? 
  • Do you use or drink more than you should when under pressure, angry, or depressed?
  • Are you able to drink or use more now without feeling it, compared to when you first started using?
  • Have you lost interest in other activities or noticed a decrease in your ambition as a result of your drinking or using?
  • Have you had the shakes or tremors following heavy drinking or using or not using it for some time?
  • Do you want to drink or use at a particular time each day?

Preparing For a Drug and Alcohol Assessment 

You or a loved one may have to take a drug or alcohol assessment for personal purposes, or due to a court mandate. Whichever the case, you’ll need to have certain documents with you regardless. These documents may include: a copy of the results of your Needs Assessment if you went to a DUI Alcohol or Drug Use Risk Reduction Program (RRP), a report from the Department of Driver Services or Department of Motor Vehicles describing your driving history (generally going back 7 years), a copy of any criminal history or arrests, and a copy of the arrest report.

A drug or alcohol assessment generally takes anywhere from 60 to 90 minutes. A certified addiction specialist will walk you through each step. A thorough review of your drug or alcohol abuse history will also take place to get the most accurate analysis for a treatment plan to be created. 

Why Are Drug or Alcohol Assessments Mandated by Court?

A drug or alcohol assessment mandated by the court is used to determine whether or not the affected individual has a substance use problem. These mandated assessments are often a result of a substance-related assessment. For example, the individual may have been driving under the influence or caught with an illegal substance. 

Following a drug or alcohol assessment given by the court, at least one of the following may be mandated:

  • DUI Alcohol or Drug Use Risk Reduction Program (RRP)
  • Random drug and/or alcohol urinalysis
  • AA or NA meetings
  • Substance abuse education class(es)
  • Substance abuse counseling sessions
  • Treatment program; either individual or group and either inpatient or outpatient

What is the Purpose of a Drug or Alcohol Assessment Mandated by Court?

Drug or alcohol assessments hold the purpose of determining whether or not the individual is struggling with addiction. This assessment is a collection of questions and means by which an addiction specialist can analyze you or a loved one. 

The goal is to give help to those who need it. These assessments serve as a thorough evaluation. After the evaluation, a treatment plan is put in place if deemed necessary.

There are many reasons as to why a drug or alcohol assessment is mandated by the court:

  • To determine whether or not a drug or alcohol addiction is present
  • To determine the severity of the substance use 
  • To diagnose the individual with a dual diagnosis if necessary 
  • To understand the impact of drug or alcohol use in the individual’s life
  • To provide a basis of information for creating a treatment plan

A Drug or Alcohol Assessment in Colorado Can Help You Jumpstart Addiction Recovery

Addiction recovery consists of many treatment services tailored to the unique individual to overcome addiction, as well as any co-occurring disorders. Addiction recovery is a journey that requires a plan and action to be taken. However, the most important part is that first step. Taking the first step in seeking help can be scary. A drug or alcohol assessment in colorado can help you be honest with yourself, so you can take those initial steps in addiction recovery. 

Coming to terms with any toxic behaviors and patterns allows you to find a solution so that you can learn healthier ways of coping. In treatment, you’ll learn how to develop skills that’ll help you long after you leave our recovery center. 

It also helps to remember that the medical professionals and law officials around you want to help you, so be honest when any questions are asked! Honesty is what will allow us to create the most accurate and thorough treatment plan for you or a loved one.

The court-mandated drug or alcohol assessment will help you determine the steps that will help you successfully recover from addiction. Drug or alcohol assessments in Colorado help collect vital information regarding an individual’s substance use problem. This information is then used to create a treatment plan that fits the recovering individual best. 

At Footprints to Recovery, we offer many top-quality treatment services. We take care of all kinds of addictions and mental health disorders. Our goal is to provide you with the tools you’ll need to live a sober and fulfilling life. 

Advantages of Enrolling Into a Treatment Program

The goal of a drug or alcohol assessment is to best prepare us in creating the best treatment plan we can for you or a loved one. We combine different variations of evidence-based therapies that target addiction and any underlying mental health issues. Treatment at a recovery center such as ours allows you to take the right steps in recovering from addiction. 

Addiction doesn’t need to take control of your life anymore. You can break through the chains of addiction and reclaim your life. We’ll provide you with a toolkit of healthy coping mechanisms and ways to deal with cravings.

From a beautiful facility to comfortable amenities, our recovery center aims to give you the best experience. A handful of benefits during treatment include:

  • A licensed and caring staff that provides around-the-clock care
  • A range of evidence-based therapies such as cognitive-behavioral therapy and eye movement reprocessing therapy
  • Detox programs
  • Use of amenities such as exercise rooms and holistic care

You’re Not Alone: Seek Help With Footprints to Recovery

Our approach to drug and alcohol treatment is fairly simple. We’ll prioritize your needs and meet you where you are at. Our dedicated staff of addiction specialists promises to put you first. We believe that each person has the potential to be great; it’s just a matter of taking the right steps to uncover the greatness within. A drug or alcohol assessment in Colorado is the first step in assessing addiction and striving towards a sober and fulfilling life. 

If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, please don’t hesitate to find a Footprints to Recovery center closest to you here. We’re waiting for your call!

Stephanie Ballard, LPC, CADC

Currently attending The Chicago School of Professional Psychology's Business Psychology PhD Program with an emphasis in Consulting. Graduate of The Chicago School of Professional Psychology's Masters of Arts in Clinical Counseling Program with an emphasis in Addiction.

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