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The Benefits of Gender-Specific Addiction Treatment

Gender-Specific Addiction TreatmentThe model for addiction treatment has remained relatively uniform: a form of either inpatient or outpatient treatment in which patients-ideally-receive detoxification and rehabilitation to deal with both the physical and psychological implications of their addictions. There have, however, been certain landmark evidence-based modifications that have considerably improved treatment outcomes—this is especially true of gender-specific treatment. Addiction care programs specifically designed for women and men not only eliminate many of the trust and security issues that patients experience in co-ed programs; they also take into account the unique circumstances that lead and contribute to drug and alcohol abuse in both genders.

Men and women experience practically every aspect and phase of addiction differently, from the development of substance abuse to the onset of addiction and scope of withdrawal symptoms to the lifestyle impact of their chemical dependency to access and response to treatment. It has become increasingly apparent that men and women benefit from treatment that addresses the unique distinctions within each gender such as physical size, roles and expectations within families and other systems, lifestyle and behavioral factors and external social pressures. Programs that help patients heal as men or as women have produced encouraging results during the treatment process. For the best possible outcome, the criteria and model for addiction treatment ought to cater to the specialized distinctions within each gender.

Clinicians and care providers have been aware for some time of the clinical benefits of separate treatment programs for men and women; but it has only recently become institutionally recommended practice. In December of 2009, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) unveiled Treatment Improvement Protocol 51 (TIP 51) to illustrate the improved treatment outcomes within programs that catered exclusively to women. The report highlighted the benefits of integrating women’s relationships with their families, their socio-economic status and other cultural variables into their treatment to better understand the origins of their addictions. The report also suggests that there are distinct early-risk factors which can more readily prompt initial substance abuse, as well as accelerated physical complications within women, such as liver disease, cardiac conditions and organ damage.

Although TIP 51 focuses strictly on the unique care needs of women, men come with their own specific care issues that are best addressed in a men-only treatment environment for optimum outcomes. Year after year, drug and alcohol addiction is consistently higher in men than women. According to the Center for Disease Control, men are 24% more likely than women to binge drink. Additionally, a recent study published in the Journal of Abnormal Psychology revealed that men are more likely to develop addiction because they externalize emotions and are more likely than women to let impulses guide their actions. This is a specific behavioral pattern best explored within a controlled, gender-specific rehabilitative environment. Men are also generally under more pressure to fill the role of provider within their families and it is not uncommon for them to cope with said pressures by turning to drugs and alcohol.

Behavioral Health of the Palm Beaches has been at the forefront of gender-specific addiction care for years, and has developed two state-of-the-art facilities (The Recovery Center for Men and the Recovery Center for Women) to help each patient successfully explore what role their gender has played in the onset and continuation of their addiction. Each facility offers a safe and supportive environment; industry-leading doctors and addiction care experts; and a full menu of specialized programs to help patients examine and repair all aspects of their lives that have suffered in the wake of their drug and alcohol abuse, including their careers and families.

Patients who receive treatment in a gender-specific addiction care program are considerably more likely to maintain long-term success in their recovery. This model of treatment allows patients to cultivate heightened self-awareness and recognize the behavioral pitfalls of drug and alcohol abuse. The Recovery Center for Men and The Recovery Center for Women have the resources you or your loved one need to battle back against addiction and restore your quality of life. We can provide an in-depth level of treatment of which most co-ed programs may not be capable. Visit rehabformen.com or helpforwomen.com to take your first step toward healing.

Behavioral Health 1-888-432-2467

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