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Audit-C Calculator – Am I an Alcoholic?

Created by Aleksandra Zając, MD
Reviewed by Bogna Szyk and Jack Bowater
Based on research by
Babor TF, Higgins-Biddle JC, Saunders JB, Monteiro M AUDIT. The Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test: Guidelines for Use in Primary Care; World Health Organization; 2001See 3 more sources
Bush K, Kivlahan DR, McDonell MB, Fihn SD, Bradley KA The AUDIT alcohol consumption questions (AUDIT-C): an effective brief screening test for problem drinking. Ambulatory Care Quality Improvement Project (ACQUIP). Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test; Archives of Internal Medicine; Sep 1998Bradley KA, DeBenedetti AF, Volk RJ, Williams EC, Frank D, Kivlahan DR AUDIT-C as a brief screen for alcohol misuse in primary care; Alcoholism, clinical and experimental research; Jul 2007Frank D, DeBenedetti AF, Volk RJ, Williams EC, Kivlahan DR, Bradley KA Effectiveness of the AUDIT-C as a Screening Test for Alcohol Misuse in Three Race/Ethnic Groups; Journal of General Internal Medicine; Jun 2008
Last updated: Jun 05, 2023

The Audit-C calculator, short for alcohol use disorders identification test – consumption, allows you to quickly asses and identify your drinking patterns. It's a simple 3-item test adapted from the more complex Audit Alcohol Test. The Audit Alcohol Test is a proven and practical method of detecting whether or not a person is likely to have current or future alcohol-related problems.

An Audit-C score is sensitive not only to alcohol dependence but also to alcohol abuse or hazardous drinking.

Who can use the Audit-C calculator?

Anyone who wishes to check how their drinking habits compare to the average can use the Audit-C calculator. It can be helpful if you're wondering if the amount of alcohol you consume is within the normal range, as well as serving as the first step of a more advanced alcohol screening process – the more extensive Audit Alcohol Test.

However, if you are ever concerned about how much alcohol you drink, do not hesitate to seek professional medical advice from a physician, general practitioner, or psychologist. Do not let a day of your life be lost to addiction.

This tool, due to its conciseness and simplicity, is often a regular item when taking a patient's standard medical history, such as when being admitted to primary or emergency care or a psychiatric unit. Consider having your patients take it, especially if they're in one of the at-risk groups, such as pregnant women, college students, or incarcerated persons. It helps to spot hazardous drinking patterns and thus enables early intervention. On the contrary, the popular 'Mrs/Mr, how much do you drink?' question often leads to underestimates of the amount of alcohol consumed. If you're suspecting drug-related problems, you can utilize DUDIT calculator instead.

How much can I drink safely?

There is no rigid boundary between safe and risky drinking – it differs between persons, conditions, and where someone is in their lives.

However, medical professionals in the US recommend consuming no more than 14 (men) / 7 (women) standard drinks per week to keep the health risks from alcohol at a low level. You should also spread those drinking days evenly throughout the week, maintaining some days of total abstinence (sobriety) in between.

Currently, there is no evidence that small amounts of alcohol are beneficial for your health – do not start drinking "because of health reasons".

If you've had a drink (or a few) and wondered, "what effect is this having on me?", you can check our blood alcohol content calculator. It even estimates the time when you'll be sober again!

How to calculate my Audit-C score?

These are the steps to calculate your Audit-C score:

  1. You only have to give honest responses to the questions in this screening tool. The Audit-C calculator will then give your answers the appropriate points and find the sum of them itself.

  2. Determine how often you have a drink. Keep in mind this is only for the past year.

  3. Assess how many units of alcohol you consume on those drinking days.

  4. Finally, think about how often you have days where you consume more than six units of alcohol.

  5. Your Audit-C score is ready! Find out what you can do with the result.

Audit-C score interpretation

  • If your result lies within the normal range of alcohol consumption – you have nothing to worry about. Try to keep your drinking to this level.

  • If your result is in the moderate risk category, it means that you are at moderate risk of causing yourself future harm. Keep an eye on your drinking habits, and if you're ever concerned about them, consider seeking professional advice.

  • If your score is between 6-7 points, you are in the high-risk group, indicating alcohol misuse. The term includes hazardous drinking, alcohol abuse, and alcohol dependence. High risk relates to having a high risk of causing yourself health problems and suffering from serious medical conditions, e.g., liver damage. It is advised that you seek professional help – do not hesitate to tell your physician about your concerns.

  • If your drinking patterns put you in the severe risk group, it is strongly advised that you ask for immediate professional help. This level of alcohol consumption may lead to severe medical conditions, such as liver failure, and is also related to other problems – interpersonal struggles, failure to meet major obligations at work, school, or home, and alcohol-related legal problems. Do not neglect this result. Seek professional advice.

I'm worried about my result. Am I an alcoholic?

First of all, if you were unsure about your drinking habits, it is great that you have searched for an Audit tool to get a more objective opinion. The test can raise suspicions but cannot replace expert advice. If your result suggests that you should keep a close eye on your alcohol-related habits or are at risk of alcohol misuse, here are a few steps you can take:

  • Set yourself a drinking limit. Think about that question before entering a party.

  • Take breaks from alcohol. Maintain some days of total abstinence, especially between days when you know you are going to drink.

  • Do not keep alcohol at home. Do not buy alcohol "just in case of guests".

  • Tell your close friends and family about your concerns.

  • Inform a medical professional about your concerns. You can reach out to your GP, make an appointment with a therapist, or call the AA line.

AUDIT alcohol screen

As mentioned above, Audit-C is a test adapted from a more thorough one – AUDIT. A medical officer may ask you to complete the test if they're concerned about your alcohol consumption. AUDIT contains ten questions, some of which refer to the emotional sides of alcohol use, like feeling remorse or guilt after consumption. Some require you to be honest and open about "the morning afters" and what other people think about your drinking habits.

Aleksandra Zając, MD
In the past year...
How often did you drink alcohol?
2-4 times a month
How many drinks did you have on an avg. drinking day?
1-2 drinks
How often did you have 6 or more drinks at once?
Your result is 2 points. You consume a normal amount of alcohol – there is nothing to worry about!
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