Women and stress have a unique relationship because the pressures on women are overwhelming for many. Working full time, taking care of a household, and meeting expectations based on how they’re perceived in society are a few stressful factors. The element of juggling all of this alone can cause a lot of distress.
Women perceive stress differently from men. The monthly hormonal fluctuations of women are partly responsible for this difference. Women are wired to be more emotionally sensitive than men, making it harder for them to make a clear-cut decision and then move on to the next task.
Women carry a greater sense of responsibility for the people around them than men do. This adds to their burden and makes them feel more stressed out sometimes.
Substance Abuse Among Females
Drug abuse and women’s health have been linked for more than a century. They were using opium in the 1800s, morphine around the time of the Civil War, and valium in the 1950s. Alcohol has been a socially acceptable drug of choice for women for decades. Prescription pills are now the biggest problem amongst moms — they’re the new face of addiction.
According to a recent study, 15.8 million women used illicit drugs in 2014. Women experience more physical effects when they use drugs than men do. Their hearts and blood vessels are damaged more easily. Women can be more likely to develop anxiety or depression because of drug use than men. Stress and women’s health are factors that contribute to this.
Causes of Women’s Drug Abuse
Women are more likely than men to use drugs to reduce stress or escape the pressures of daily life. Some women start with a glass of wine to relax or take the edge off their stress. They find other substances to help them get through the day and manage all the pressure.
No one sets out to become a drug addict, but sometimes these coping mechanisms get out of hand and result in addiction. Often, by the time a woman is aware she has a substance abuse problem, it’s too difficult for her to fix the problem on her own.
Women are also more susceptible to addiction in many cases than men. They can become addicted to alcohol much faster and might develop an addiction to nicotine with their first cigarette.
Women’s Mental Health
Mental health issues can lead women to use substances to self-medicate. Substance abuse can create or exacerbate a mental health issue. Addiction is a serious mental health condition that requires professional help to overcome.
If you’re a woman struggling with substance abuse, Tranquil Shores alcohol and drug recovery center can help. Although we’re co-ed, we do offer gender-specific groups as well as one on one counseling. Get the help you need and reclaim your life. Contact us today!