What Does a Substance Abuse Counselor Do? - Video

A Substance Abuse Counselor works with families and individuals to overcome addiction. These addictions can include drugs or alcohol. SA Counselors provide assessments, counseling and suggestions for further services to help addicted individuals cope and lead normal lives.

Job Description

A Substance Abuse Counselor is a health professional who assists families and individuals who are addicted to drugs or alcohol. Most work in the area of social services and are responsible for counseling people with addiction problems. Substance Abuse Counselors typically need a bachelor's degree in addition to counseling or life experience. Certification may also be required, depending on the state of employment.

Daily Duties

Substance Abuse Counselors use a variety of counseling techniques to help patients deal with addiction. Treatment techniques may include patient screenings, developing individualized treatment plans or holding interventions. Counselors may also refer patients to other programs in the area or consult with other professionals about proper treatment. Other daily duties include patient record keeping, education of clients and families, providing life skills training and general case management.

Work Setting

Most Substance Abuse Counselors work in private practices, hospitals, detox centers, clinics and community health organizations. Private office settings are essential as counselors work with clients regarding confidential information. Substance Abuse Counselors will also work closely with other health care and human service professionals. These professional collaborations may include dealing with social workers, career counselors, psychologists or welfare agents.

Substance Abuse Counselors often find themselves working in the evenings in order to fit into the schedule of their clients who also work during the day. Some facilities may also operate 24 hours a day, which can potentially lead to odd work hours.

Related Videos

  • How Do I Become a Licensed Professional Counselor? - Video

    Professional Counselors, also known as therapists, give guidance to people who are experiencing problems in their personal lives or careers. To work as a Licensed Professional Counselor, you must meet specific education requirements and pass the necessary licensing examinations. Learn more about becoming a Licensed Professional Counselor here.
  • How Do I Become a Mental Health Counselor? - Video

    Before you can become a Mental Health Counselor, you must meet national standards for education, training, licensing and certification. Read on to learn more about the education and training required for clinical practice in mental health counseling.

Related Articles for What Does a Substance Abuse Counselor Do?

View More Articles