• Substance Abuse and Chemical Dependency

  • Let me help you with your stages of change


    Transtheoretical Model-6 Stages:

    1. Precontemplation - In this stage, people do not intend to take action in the foreseeable future (defined as within the next 6 months). People are often unaware that their behavior is problematic or produces negative consequences. People in this stage often underestimate the pros of changing behavior and place too much emphasis on the cons of changing behavior.
    1. Contemplation - In this stage, people are intending to start the healthy behavior in the foreseeable future (defined as within the next 6 months). People recognize that their behavior may be problematic, and a more thoughtful and practical consideration of the pros and cons of changing the behavior takes place, with equal emphasis placed on both. Even with this recognition, people may still feel ambivalent toward changing their behavior.
    1. Preparation (Determination) - In this stage, people are ready to take action within the next 30 days. People start to take small steps toward the behavior change, and they believe changing their behavior can lead to a healthier life.
    1. Action - In this stage, people have recently changed their behavior (defined as within the last 6 months) and intend to keep moving forward with that behavior change. People may exhibit this by modifying their problem behavior or acquiring new healthy behaviors.
    1. Maintenance - In this stage, people have sustained their behavior change for a while (defined as more than 6 months) and intend to maintain the behavior change going forward. People in this stage work to prevent relapse to earlier stages.
    1. Termination - In this stage, people have no desire to return to their unhealthy behaviors and are sure they will not relapse. Since this is rarely reached, and people tend to stay in the maintenance stage, this stage is often not considered in health promotion programs.  


    Ask yourself and honestly answer questions below regarding your substance use:

    1. Taking the substance in larger amounts or for longer than you we’re meant to.

    2. Wanting to cut down or stop using the substance but not managing to.

    3. Spending a lot of time getting, using, or recovering from use of the substance.

    4. Cravings and urges to use the substance.

    5. Not managing to do what you should at work, home, or school because of substance use.

    6. Continuing to use, even when it causes problems in relationships.

    7. Giving up important social, occupational, or recreational activities because of substance use.

    8. Using substances again and again, even when it puts you in danger.

    9. Continuing to use, even when you know you have a physical or psychological problem that could have been caused or made worse by the substance.

    10. Needing more of the substance to get the effect you want (tolerance).

    11. Development of withdrawal symptoms, which can be relieved by taking more of the substance.

    If you meet criteria for one of the above challenges, you are an abuser and if you meet criteria for three or more you are dependent.