The hallmark of addictive behavior is denial. However, every addict has insight into his or her problem at a subconscious level. There are periodic moments of clarity and honesty during which they may open out to others, or seek help for themselves. These moments are few and far between, and often very brief.
One of the most effective short tests to diagnose an addiction problem is the RAPS4 test, a test made up of four questions pertaining to remorse (R), amnesia (A), performance (P), and starter drinking behavior (S), with regard to the persons drinking or drug use over the last 12 months.
Initially the Rapid Alcohol Problems Screen (RAPS) was a five item test, but was later refined into its present form. It uses questions taken from other diagnostic tools to create a comprehensive and accurate screening test. The questions apply equally effectively to all addictive substances.
An yes to any one question is an indication of an addictive process that needs to be addressed urgently.
If you have questions about your own or a loved one's behavior, apply this short test and determine whether intervention is needed.
1. Have you had a feeling of guilt or remorse after drinking?
2. Has a friend or a family member ever told you about things you said or did while you were drinking that you could not remember?
3. Have you failed to do what was normally expected of you because of drinking?
4. Do you sometimes take a drink when you first get up in the morning?