Drug and Alcohol Treatment Specialist

Create innovative treatment plans for people addicted to drugs or alcohol.
picture of Drug and Alcohol Treatment Specialist

Quick Stats


Salary Range
$25,000 – $60,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Drug and Alcohol Treatment Specialists do?

From painkillers to cocktails, recreational and medicinal drugs have addictive qualities. When a person begins to rely on alcohol or drugs, they run into legal, health, relationship, and employment problems. Drug and Alcohol Treatment Specialists are trained to help them change the course of their addiction and improve their lives.

As a Drug and Alcohol Treatment Specialist, you might work at a rehabilitation center, a clinic, a hospital, or other treatment facility. You offer a variety of services, beginning with intervention or crisis response, depending on the situation. Once you get the patient into treatment, you assess the level of dependency and create a treatment plan.

Because drug and alcohol dependency affects so many aspects of the patient’s life, you work in conjunction with Therapists, Medical Doctors, and other Counselors. For example, you might refer your patient to an Addictions Counselor if she struggles with sex addiction or gambling addiction in addition to her chemical dependency.

Creating an effective treatment plan requires all of your Drug and Alcohol Treatment Specialist skills, because there’s a high failure rate with patients who are fighting drug and alcohol addictions. You consider their past experiences, current living situations, drug-using friends, and family support. In fact, you set up meetings with family and friends to educate them about what they can do to support the patient. With a plan and support, your clients can face their addiction with optimism and hope.

Should I be a Drug and Alcohol Treatment Specialist?

You should have a bachelor's degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Levelheaded: You hold your emotions in check, even in tough situations.
  • Helpful: You always keep an eye out for what other people need.
  • Trustworthy: You are known for your personal integrity and honesty.

  • How to Become a
    Drug and Alcohol Treatment Specialist

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