No one is immune to alcohol addiction, regardless of their personality, age, background, or even biological gender. But how much can these factors contribute to your addiction and how much you drink? And how much does it take for you to be classified as an addict?

Gender has some of the greatest effects on addiction because it is based around body build, structure, and emotional response. In fact, men are more likely than women to use almost any drug and have higher rates of substance abuse.

It is important to know what qualities of gender affect alcoholism, not only to be able to keep yourself in check but to watch out for other peers and loved ones. Even the slightest differences in the body can flip the world upside down for any alcoholic individual.

Quantity and Potency

While alcohol tolerance varies between any individual, typically men have a higher alcohol tolerance than women. Additionally, the amount of alcohol consumed varies between men and women.

On average, more than four drinks a day or 14 drinks per week is considered an addiction for men, while for women, more than three drinks a day or seven drinks per week is considered an addiction—nearly half of the number for men.

Response to Alcohol

Alcohol response is not just limited to the amount of alcohol consumed, but how the body as a whole may react to it. Women are more likely to become addicted quicker than men and their bodies tend to react more adversely to increased intake of alcohol.

Women who deal with unhealthy drinking habits have an increased risk of liver damage, heart disease, and breast cancer. Women who also drink while pregnant can increase the possibility of fetal defects.

The reason men are at a higher risk for substance abuse, however, is because they often have more opportunities than women. Much of the time, they are exposed to alcohol at a young age with older kids or adults. Therefore, they tend to have easier access to substances with less social standards attached.

Seeking Help and Recovery

When it comes to searching for therapy and reaching recovery, men are actually more likely to seek help than their female counterparts. This has nothing to do with behavior issues, but rather social standards and obligations.

Most women refrain from recovery due to worry for child-care, responsibilities in the work place and at home, lack of social support, and the cost of treatment. On top of this, many women deal with the social stigma of being a female addict, which is less common than with men.

This isn’t to say there aren’t male addicts who deal with the same responsibilities, but oftentimes such issues do not hold a man back from recovery. Part of this lies with women having more emotional baggage to deal with, as well as higher societal expectations. Both genders do not handle methods of therapy in the same way, in the same way as many individuals—regardless of gender—do not all handle recovery in virtually the same way.

Both genders of male and female deal with many different complications when it comes to alcohol addiction. No one man deals with alcohol the same, nor does one woman. But many problems can align.

If you, your spouse, or another loved one might be showing signs of struggle with alcohol addiction or are currently fighting it, consider seeking recovery through Discovery Place’s many different local Alcohol Addiction Programs in Tennessee. Whether through our 30 Day Residential Addiction Recovery Program or Long Term Recovery Program in Burns, Tennessee, we can find the right treatment for you. Reach out for help and call us at 1-800-725-0922 today.


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    Kim Morton
    Alumni Parent
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