While addiction is an issue that affects just about every imaginable demographic group, research has shown that there are stark differences in the respective addiction experiences of men and women. Addiction experts have pointed out that from a societal standpoint, boys and men have historically been rewarded for behaviors like risk-taking, competitiveness, and impulsiveness. In certain contexts, these behaviors can lead to an increased risk of addiction, especially among adolescents and young men.
While the addiction gender gap continues to close, men have always had—and continue to have—higher rates of addiction than women. Research also shows that from a statistical standpoint, young men are in one of the highest-risk categories for developing substance use issues. A recent comprehensive study found that men between the ages of 25 and 34 were two times more likely to develop an addiction than men ages 45 to 50.
Key Differences in the Addiction Cycle in Men and Women
Men are most likely to become addicted to:
- Sex and pornography
- Illicit drugs
The only areas in which women exceed men in terms of addiction rates are prescription tranquilizer drug abuse and food addiction.
For men, the good news is that statistically speaking, they are more likely than women to remain enrolled in an addiction treatment program for a period of 30 days or more. Women also appear less likely to seek professional help for addiction or substance use. Studies have shown that a one-size-fits-all approach does not work when it comes to gender and addiction. Men and women develop addictions for different reasons and their bodies react differently to substances. Cultural and emotional factors also play a significant role, especially in group-recovery settings.
The Red Oak Recovery Program for Men
At Red Oak Recovery, we recognize that there are no easy answers to addiction, and that every person’s experience with substance use and addiction is unique. Our groundbreaking young men’s program is specifically developed to help males of all ages address not only the problematic behavior itself, but also its underlying causes and complicating factors. In addition, our credentialed addiction specialists prioritize the specific developmental and transitional issues faced by young men in addiction recovery, and deliver a therapeutic curriculum that promotes healing of mind and spirit as well as body.
If you or a young adult you care about is suffering from a substance use or addiction problem, we can help. For further information, please contact a Red Oak Recovery admissions counselor to discuss insurance authorization, self-payment options, and affordable addiction treatment plans.