man with hand on head considering if men are more prone to addiction

Are Men More Prone to Addiction Issues?

Addiction doesn’t recognize gender. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, men and women are equally likely to develop a substance use disorder. However, different circumstances can make some men prone to addiction. In a men’s addiction treatment program, the focus is on risks and issues that are specific to men. 

For more information about the benefits of gender-specific rehab, call Promises Behavioral Health today at 844.875.5609.

Men and Addiction: Does Gender Really Make a Difference?

Although men and women are equally at risk for addiction, gender plays an important role in how and why men become addicted and their obstacles to treatment. Men are more likely to use illegal drugs and to experiment with many types of drugs. They are also at greater risk for emergency room visits related to drug use and death by overdose.

Here are some other facts about men’s addiction issues from the National Institute on Drug Abuse. Men with substance use disorder are:

  • More likely to engage in unprotected sex, increasing their risk of contracting STDs, including hepatitis and HIV
  • Twice as likely to fail to make child support payments as men who do not have drug or alcohol use disorders
  • More likely than women to start using substances at an early age
  • At high risk for diseases of the pancreas and liver, prostate cancer, and gastrointestinal and neurological problems
  • More likely than women to wait to get treatment

Prolonged addiction means men are more likely to have physical and mental health concerns related to substance use. In fact, more than half of the men seeking treatment for a substance use disorder have a co-occurring psychiatric disorder.

Stigmas with Addiction for Men

Men also face a different set of stigmas when it comes to drug and alcohol use and treatment. They are more likely to be pressured into taking risks when it comes to trying substances. Alcohol is a major part of men’s socialization routines. The expectation to consume alcohol with other men is especially high.

Societal stigmas can also be an obstacle to recovery. Men are conditioned to be strong and self-sufficient. Asking for help may be perceived as a sign of weakness. Once in recovery, many men struggle to express their feelings, fears, and concerns. This kind of deep emotional work is a necessary part of recovery. Discussing childhood abuse, sexual abuse, and other traumas can be especially difficult.

Benefits of Men’s Only Addiction Treatment

Co-ed rehab programs are highly effective and appropriate for many people. However, gender-specific programs offer focused therapies that may not be available in co-ed programs. Men with difficulty expressing emotions, those with co-occurring disorders, and those with health issues related to addiction may benefit most from a men’s only treatment center.

Some additional benefits include:

  • More comfort discussing issues specific to men
  • Male-centered nutritional and fitness programs
  • Fewer concerns about being judged
  • Less pressure to appear strong or protective of others
  • Concentration on issues of fatherhood
  • Learning to bond with other men without drugs or alcohol
  • Less embarrassment or shame over sensitive topics

Not all men’s addiction issues are specifically male-oriented. Men and women share many of the same feelings of guilt, hopelessness, and anger about their addiction disorder. However, gender-specific rehab provides a safe place for men to explore all of the issues that concern them. The ability to freely discuss any topic in a male-only environment can help many men reach their goal of sustained sobriety.

Promises Behavioral Health Supports Men and Addiction Recovery

The number of women and men prone to addiction may be similar, but that doesn’t mean their experiences are exactly the same. If you have questions about men and addiction recovery or need to learn more about our men’s recovery program, call Promises Behavioral Health today at 844.875.5609.

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