Drug & Alcohol Awareness FAQs & Resources

As a leading provider of HR Compliance eLearning, our experts are often asked about Drug and Alcohol in the workplace. We've collected all of those questions and answered them for you below...

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Drug & Alcohol Awareness FAQs

Do you provide Drug & Alcohol awareness training? 

Yes, our Drug & Alcohol awareness training is CPD Accredited, and RoSPA Approved and takes just 25 minutes to complete. 

What is addiction?

Addiction is a complex disease to understand. It can affect the brain and the body and you can be addicted to a substance or an activity. There have been suggestions that addiction can be genetic. It can cause harm to your families, ruin relationships and put jobs in danger.

What is alcoholism?

Alcoholism is the addiction to consuming alcohol and the inability to manage how much of it you are having. Alcoholism is the dependency of alcohol and often feeling like they can not go without it and suffers will often put it above everything else in their life. As drinking can be used as a social tool, alcoholism may not always seem as obvious as drug addiction because it can hide in plain sight.

Is alcoholism different to addiction?

Alcoholism refers to the addiction to alcohol, so alcoholism is a form of addition.

What are the signs?

Here are some of the psychological, social and physical signs:


  • Addiction itself is a psychological issue which results in the inability to stop using
  • Ignoring health problems
  • A coping mechanism
  • Obsessions
  • Taking risks with health and personal safety


  • Priorities change - not being to participate in social things because of their addiction
  • Dropping hobbies
  • Solitude & secrecy
  • Denial
  • Financial problems
  • Problems with the law


  • Withdrawal symptoms - shivering, cravings, constipation, seizures, sweating and violence
  • Losing weight
  • Damage to the body and possible diseases
  • Insomnia

Should I have a substance misuse policy?

Studies have found that people with alcohol problems are 2.7 times more likely to have an accident at work. Other issues associated with substance misuse are absenteeism, reduced productivity and bad behaviour. The policy helps safeguard everyone in the workplace, which employers have a duty to do under the Health and Safety Act 1974.

What effect can drugs and alcohol have on your health?

Drug Health Effects:

  • Increase of cardiovascular disease
  • Liver damage from both drug and alcohol abuse
  • Kidney damage resulting in dialysis
  • Pain and pleasure receptors can be affected by drug abuse alongside mental health and memory.
  • Increased risk of lung cancer when smoking drugs

Alcohol Health Effects:

  • Cancer risks - throat, liver, breast
  • Anemia
  • Dementia
  • Seizures
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Depression
  • Gout
  • Nerve
  • Liver Damage

Is there legislation for drug and alcohol misuse?

While there is no legislation to arrest someone for being an alcoholic or an addict, having a policy in the workplace will allow you to reprimand employees for alcohol or drug misuse. This being said, there are various legislations that apply to some of the behaviours and actions that are caused or heightened by alcohol or drugs.

What do I do if I think I have a drug and alcohol problem?

Mind provides a list of contacts for support with addiction and dependency.

FAQs regarding our Drug & Alcohol Awareness course

Who is this course suitable for?

This course is suitable for any employee, employer, managers in any industry. This course could also be used in non-work related environments to educate people on the effects that drugs and alcohol have on your body.

How long is my certificate valid for?

It is up to the training administrator of the employee as to when training needs to be refreshed. However, to stay up-to-date with legislation, we recommend that training should be renewed every year.​

Why is this training important?

This training is important to generate general awareness about the effects of drugs and alcohol as well as being able to recognize problems in employees and the effects that they can have on your body.

How long does it take to complete?

This course takes 25 minutes to complete.

What approvals does this course have?

This course is CPD Accredited and RoSPA Approved.

Documents and resources

  • Personalised Help List Suggestions

    Drinking can become a serious problem. It’s important to recognise that you MAY have a problem and do something about it BEFORE it’s too late! We have created a list of suggestions. You may find some of them useful. Everyone is different. Things that work for one person may not work for another. Decide which may help you, put them in priority order and create your own personalised list.

  • Substance Misuse Policy - Suggested Inclusions

    There is no such thing as a STANDARD Substance Misuse Policy, because all organisations are DIFFERENT and need to have a policy to suit their own requirements. However, there ARE certain areas that must be covered in order for a Policy to be effective. Included here are important elements that should be considered in a Substance Misuse Policy.

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