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The Major Challenges Women Face in Overcoming Addiction

Both men and women undergo devastating emotional and physical effects of addiction to alcohol or drugs. But, some studies have shown that women particularly face some obstacles and barriers in dealing with addiction, seeking therapy and receiving effective treatment to assist them in overcoming the addiction issue. Below are some of the special challenges that women face in rehab.

Many of the women who decide to go to rehab are at a disadvantage from the start. Some studies have shown that women who become addicted to alcohol or drugs tend to have lower socioeconomic status and lower schooling levels. They often search for treatment after referral from the judges or friends, family or co-workers. On the other hand, many men are referred to rehab centers by employers, doctors or even the legal system.

A lot of women also treat drug addiction as a problem associated with stress and assume that it is going to go away without needing treatment. Women usually have more responsibilities in their families in raising children and so might think that they cannot leave their family for a long time to seek treatment or may be in denial about how severe their dependence problem is. Women who are addicted to alcohol or drugs normally have depression and anxiety that cause them to avoid treatment or might have undergone some emotional, physical or sexual abuse which causes feelings of shame and trauma.

There is still a lot of stigma that’s attached to women who abuse drugs or alcohol particularly women who have children or who are not pregnant. Without the help to take care of their kids, family and work obligations during rehabilitation and recovery, women are most times discouraged from looking for treatment. The societal shame and possible disapproval from relatives, friends, co-workers, and companies are enough to maintain lots of them from therapy completely, and also the fear of losing the custody of the children is just another demotivator.

Other women might be intimidated by other obstacles from the treatment facilities themselves. For instance, a woman who experienced emotional, physical or sexual abuse from a man may be afraid of the idea of seeking treatment from centers where men work. Since women may have significant responsibilities for childcare and may also be working or don’t have insurance coverage; treatment facilities might not be possible because of financial factors.

Fortunately, there are treatment centers that recognize that women’s needs are not similar to men’s needs and it may be good to have a program that’s specifically designed to overcome these barriers and help them find treatment. Several facilities offer programs that focus on helping women to deal with addiction.

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