Everyone is unique when it comes to addiction and recovery, but men and women, in particular, use drugs differently and endure varying obstacles when it comes to treatment and recovery. Gender-specific addiction treatment programs in California aim to provide highly-focused, individualized care that addresses the unique needs of both genders while also allowing them to heal in a safe, supportive, and comforting setting.
Whether you are male or female, you may be concerned about going to rehab with the opposite gender. Romantic interests, distractions, and discomfort in discussing sensitive topics with the other gender can not only disrupt your recovery but can also be intimidating. Fortunately, you can eliminate these concerns by attending a women’s-only or men’s-only rehab center.
What is Gender-Specific Addiction Treatment?
Gender-specific substance abuse treatment refers to rehabilitation programs that are uniquely designed to treat men and women in separate settings. While most rehab centers offer co-ed treatment during which both genders are present during therapy sessions, these programs keep men and women separate from each other.
Gender-specific programs operate the same way as any other treatment program does, however, they tend specifically to the needs of one gender. This approach is able to provide highly-focused care and pave the way for improved treatment outcomes.
Gender Differences in Addiction and Recovery
Men and women experience differences in addiction and recovery when it comes to the choice of substance used, the rate at which they become addicted, and how the brain responds to drug and alcohol abuse. Both genders also have varying drivers behind their substance abuse, life experiences, and treatment preferences. Gender-specific drug and alcohol rehab centers keep all of these considerations in mind.
Considerations for Women in Recovery
Women are more likely than men to turn to drugs and alcohol as a way to self-medicate a mental health condition or cope with buried emotions caused by trauma or abuse. In fact, approximately 80% of women seeking treatment for addiction have a history of trauma, and more than half struggle with a mental health condition.[1,2]
In order for treatment to be effective, it must address a woman’s history of trauma as well as her mental health. Because many women have experienced trauma in the form of sexual assault, domestic partner violence, or emotional abuse at the hands of a male partner or family member, many women are not comfortable becoming vulnerable about their experiences in front of men. A women’s rehab center creates a female-only environment in which women can feel safe, comforted, and respected.
When it comes to recovery, women tend to go to treatment sooner. They also tend to enter treatment with the help of loved ones or family members who are concerned about their well-being. Women may have specific concerns in terms of their family, motherhood, parenting, and femininity that are best addressed at a gender-specific addiction treatment center.
Considerations for Men in Recovery
Men, on the other hand, often begin using drugs and alcohol because of the benefits they think they will gain from doing so. For example, they may abuse stimulants to improve their concentration or performance at the gym. They may abuse alcohol to fit in with their friends or celebrate accomplishments. Others will abuse drugs to try and cope with the various societal pressures men face to be “strong” and “brave.”
Men often continue their addictions longer than women and their addictions progress at a slower rate. This makes room for more consequences and long-term side effects which should be addressed during treatment.
Men who attend rehab with women may not feel comfortable expressing vulnerable emotions. They may feel unsafe discussing sensitive topics such as masculinity, childhood trauma, or mental health. They may also get distracted by a romantic interest.
Benefits of Gender-Specific Rehab
By addressing gender-specific issues, women’s-only and men’s-only rehab centers are able to provide more comprehensive, individually-tailored care. Other benefits include:
- Specialized care for gender-sensitive issues
- Reduced sexual tension and distraction between opposite genders
- Supportive, understanding therapy groups made up of one’s peers
- Increased comfort and trust among clients
- Patients can receive unconditional love and understanding from their peers
Each of these advantages is what makes gender-specific addiction treatment so effective at treating addiction and co-occurring mental health conditions.
Start Gender-Specific Addiction Treatment in California Today
Drug and alcohol addiction affects everyone differently–especially men and women. A gender-specific drug and alcohol rehab program can provide each gender with the resources and tools they need to achieve long-term recovery.
Here at ARISE Treatment Center, our men’s rehab program and women’s rehab program are uniquely designed with each gender’s needs in mind. If you or a loved one think you can benefit from gender-specific care, please don’t hesitate to give us a call. One of our qualified admissions specialists is available for a confidential, risk-free assessment. Call now.