Substance Abuse Evaluation
Substance abuse by an individual can be difficult for family and friends to deal with, but it becomes even worse when the person refuses to acknowledge a problem and runs the risk of harming themselves or others. Fortunately, here in Massachusetts, there is a solution – Section 35 of the Massachusetts General Laws that permits the courts to involuntarily commit a person whose alcohol or drug abuse creates an unacceptable risk.
A key element to invoking Section 35 is substance abuse evaluation for the individual by a mental health professional. Here at Labyrinth Psychological Services our trained substance abuse evaluation counselors can help families decide on staging an intervention in which they can:
- Express their concerns about their loved one’s substance abuse
- Identify the person’s resistance to stop using alcohol or drugs
- Decide what they can and cannot do
- Accept the outcome if the person at risk refuses to accept treatment
Under the law, the substance abuser can be committed to a licensed drug treatment facility, or if there is none available, to a separate unit at a correctional facility.
But the first step is a substance abuse evaluation — a process that takes place between the individual and an addiction counselor. The goal of the process is to assess whether or not an individual’s alcohol and/or drug use is a problem. There are three categories of alcohol and drug use: social use, abuse, and dependence.
When a substance abuse evaluation is completed and an alcohol and/or drug problem is determined, our Labyrinth counselors will determine a diagnosis and make treatment recommendations that best meet the needs of the individual and his or her circumstances. Treatment recommendations are not the same for each individual because each has a unique personal and family history, current situation, strengths, and needs.
If substance abuse is impacting your life and the lives of loved ones, contact us here at Labyrinth and talk with one of our substance abuse counselors. We’re here to help.