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Talking to Your Doctor About Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD)

  • Cynthia M. Johnson, MA
Publication Type:


Talking to Your Doctor About Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD)

Talk openly and often with your doctor. It will help you make the best choices for your care.

Tips for Getting Information

Here are some tips that will help you talk to your doctor:

  • Bring someone with you. It helps to have another person hear what is said and think of questions to ask. They may also be able to give more details.
  • Write down your questions so do you do not forget them.
  • Write down the answers you get and make sure you understand what you are hearing.
  • Ask for help if you need it. Do not be afraid to ask questions or ask where you can find more information. You have a right to know.

Questions to Ask

About Alcohol Use Disorder

  • Do you think I have a problem with drinking?
  • Have you helped other people with AUD?
  • Where can I get help for AUD?
  • I’m worried that I’ve done damage to my body because of my drinking. Do I need to have any tests done?

About Your Risk of Health Problems from AUD

  • Do my health problems have anything to do with my drinking?
  • Am I putting my health at risk if I do not make changes to my drinking?

About Treatment

  • What medical and nonmedical treatments are available for AUD?
  • What are the benefits, risks, and side effects of medical treatments for AUD?
  • How do the treatments work and how long will they take?
  • Do you know of any support groups for people with AUD?
  • Do you know of any mental health professional that treats people who have AUD?

Questions to ask mental health professionals:

  • What type of training and how much experience do you have in treating AUD?
  • What is your approach to treatment?
  • How long will treatments last?
  • How long and frequent are the sessions?

About Lifestyle Changes

  • What changes can I make to reduce my use of alcohol?
  • Is there anything I can do to recover more quickly?

About Outlook

  • What are my chances of successful recovery?
  • What if I start drinking again?
  • What are my chances of reversing any damage I may have done to my body because of AUD?


  • Alcohol use disorder. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: https://www.dynamed.com/condition/alcohol-use-disorder.
  • Alcohol withdrawal syndrome. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: https://www.dynamed.com/condition/alcohol-withdrawal-syndrome.
  • Day E, Copello A, Hull M. Assessment and management of alcohol use disorders. BMJ. 2015;350:h715.
  • Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5). American Psychiatric Association; 2013.


  • Adrian Preda, MD
Last Updated:

This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.