Steps of Addiction Assessment

Steps of Addictions Assessment Processes

Steps of Addiction Assessment: Addiction may take many forms. A person may be addicted to a substance, such as cocaine, or a behavior, such as gambling. Individuals who enter into addictions assessment generally have exhibited certain hallmarks of addiction, such as an increase in the behavior, problems in relationships and life functioning, and withdrawal symptoms upon ceasing the behavior.

Someone with a potential addiction may be facing a host of issues. He or she might require medical and/or legal help following the Steps of Addiction Assessment. A teenager may be a minor requiring parental consent for any treatment and might already be receiving help from a guidance counselor or school psychologist.

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Steps of Addiction Assessment
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It is true that individual assessments have unique features and should be tailored to the needs of and aspects related to each individual being assessed. However, there are important steps common to most assessments that allow addictions professionals to gather reliable, valid, and relevant information about the clients they serve, as well as to enlist the best set of professionals to form the multidisciplinary team.

This week, you describe the steps of a standard addictions assessment and reflect on the importance of using a multidisciplinary team.


To prepare on Steps of Addiction Assessment:

Review the Learning Resources, including the following:

Perkinson, R. R. (2017). Chemical dependency counseling: A practical guide (5th ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.


Write a 2-3 -page paper that includes the following:

  • The steps of an addictions assessment
  • An explanation of why each step is important
  • One example of a multidisciplinary team and the contribution each of the team members might make to the assessment


Required Resources on Steps of Addiction Assessment:

Perkinson, R. R. (2017). Chemical dependency counseling: A practical guide (5th ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

  • Chapter 1, “The First Contact”
  • Chapter 14, “The Clinical Staff”

Steps of Addiction Assessment starts out with the best of intentions. Addictions professionals apply labels associated with common presenting characteristics in order to provide an understanding
of the type of help each person may require. This is the rationale behind the American
Psychiatric Association’s classic Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental
Disorders (DSM), first published in 1952 to consolidate census and psychiatric hospital
information. This resource crosses many fields, from medicine to psychiatry to


Despite the success of this text and the respect it has garnered in the field, a decades-
long controversy has surrounded the use of labels in addictions. As the primary provider
of labels, the DSM is at one end of the spectrum. At the other end are those who
criticize labels as being too limiting for various reasons, including cultural
considerations. (For the purposes of this course, culture goes beyond race and ethnicity
to include other defining aspects, such as social group, neighborhood, sexual
orientation, occupation, and others.) An individual’s behavior might be perceived as
deviant by one culture but not by another. It is also important to remember that the
DSM has undergone many revisions, the most recent in the DSM-5; it is important to
stay abreast of the changes as they occur.
In this week’s Discussion, you will analyze the implications of labeling and cultural
considerations in the addictions assessment process.
 “Some Thoughts About the Epidemiology of Alcohol and Drug Use Among American
Indian/Alaska Native Populations”
 “Views and Models About Addiction: Differences Between Treatments for Alcohol-
Dependent People and for Illicit Drug Consumers in Italy”
To prepare
Review the Learning Resources, including the following articles:
Write your response to the following:
What role, if any, should labeling play in the addiction assessment process? In your
response, include implications and cultural considerations.

Required Resources:
1.Perkinson, R. R. (2017). Chemical dependency counseling: A practical guide (5th ed.).
Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage
Young, R.S., & Joe J. R. (2009) Some Thoughts About the Epidemiology of Alcohol and
Drug Use Among American Indian/Alaska Native Populations. Journal of Ethnicity in
Substance Abuse.

Miller, G. (2010). Learning the language of addiction counseling. New York, NY: Wiley.


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