What to Expect from Drug and Alcohol Rehab Treatment for Women
Both alcoholism and drug abuse are unfortunately common in the United States. In fact, more than 4.5 million adult women in the United States have abused prescription medications over the last 12 months. In this country, a woman seeks treatment in an emergency room for related issues every three minutes. While drug abuse and addiction issues are significant, alcoholism in women is also substantial. At treatment centers across the country, approximately half of all admissions are related to alcoholism.
If you have been struggling with a drug or alcohol issue, you can see that you are in good company. Despite the prevalence of insobriety, there is hope. Many women have successfully sought treatment for their struggle with drug or alcohol abuse at respected treatment centers. A treatment program will provide you with a tailored plan that addresses your unique triggers, challenges and more. While the many treatment programs available across the United States vary, they each offer a path toward a sober lifestyle.
Some drug and alcohol abuse treatment programs are specifically designed for women. Whether you frequently turn to booze to get through your days or you have developed an addiction to cocaine, meth, pain relievers or other substances, a women-specific treatment program can provide you with the support and services that you need to reach your goals. What should you know about treatment programs designed specifically for women?
The Benefits of Women-Specific Treatment Programs
When many people think about addiction, they think about the physical cravings that the body has for drugs or alcohol. However, addiction also affects a woman’s mental, emotional and spiritual health. Treatment programs for women focus on improving health in each of these important areas. At the same time, they immerse you in a supportive environment of women who are also on similar journeys toward sober living. Some women feel more confident and secure in this type of environment. In some cases, previous abusive relationships and other issues with men have impacted women. Through a women-only treatment program, women are provided the ideal environment to recover.
On some levels, the triggers and challenges that impact a woman’s addiction differ from those for men. All drug and alcohol abuse treatment programs offer therapy, counseling and other services. However, a women-only program can be tailored specifically to address the challenges and triggers that are more prevalent among this gender. As a result, participants in the treatment program may benefit more deeply.
When you explore the many treatment programs available for drug and alcohol abuse in your area, it is important to find a program in which you believe you would be most successful. Your ability to feel well-supported by your peers and comfortable in your surroundings will play a role in your progress and even in the successful completion of the program. While there are other important factors to consider as you get better acquainted with the available treatment options, a women-only program could provide the foundation for a more relaxed, productive experience.
The Need for Gender-Specific Treatment for Drug and Alcohol Addiction
Before selecting a treatment program for drug and alcohol abuse recovery, it is important to understand the specific differences between men and women in this area. For example, women can become addicted to drugs and alcohol in less time and by consuming smaller amounts of these substances. Female sex hormones make women more sensitive to some drugs, which can impact addiction and recovery. Hormones and other body elements can produce a stronger drug effect on the cardiovascular system. All drugs will impact the human brain, but these impacts vary by sex. With these factors in mind, it is understandable that women are at greater risk of dying or requiring hospital treatment after an overdose.
There are social factors to consider as well. For example, domestic violence can increase the risk of substance abuse, and domestic violence is more common in women than men. For many women who struggle with substance abuse, major events are triggers. These include the death of a loved one, the loss of a child through death or a custody issue, divorce and more. Some women use drugs to lose weight or fight exhaustion. Whether women are triggered by these or other factors, they are more likely to suffer from depression, anxiety and panic attacks when using some substances. Some women attempt to self-treat their condition or cope with mental health symptoms through substance abuse.
Pregnancy should also be considered. Substance abuse creates significant health risks for the mother and her unborn child. In fact, these risks may include high blood pressure, seizures, migraines and miscarriage. Stillborn births are two to three times more likely for women who use cigarettes, illegal drugs and prescription painkillers. Neonatal abstinence syndrome is common for an infant affected by a mother’s substance abuse. This syndrome, which can also be associated with alcohol abuse, can result in severe symptoms for the infant as he or she goes through the withdrawal process.
The Impact of Alcoholism on Women
While men are more likely to suffer from alcoholism, many women abuse alcohol regularly or in dangerous amounts as well. In fact, women are more than 50% more likely to die from alcohol use than men. These deaths are associated with liver cirrhosis and cardiovascular issues. They are also related to accidents and suicides.
Numerous factors may impact how a person is affected by alcohol. These include drinking patterns, medications or illegal drugs being used, a family history of alcohol abuse and more. Such factors can also impact the recovery process. Long-term abuse of alcohol may result in health issues that continue to impact a person throughout life, such as the development of liver disease.
When seeking treatment for alcohol abuse, a customized treatment plan must be created specifically for your situation. Because there are differences in alcohol abuse, use and impacts between men and women, the treatment process may also differ. Some of the therapies that may be incorporated into your treatment plan include Structural Family Theory, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Trauma Resiliency Model, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy and Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing.
The Addiction Treatment Process
Generally, the steps for addiction treatment are the same for men and women, but key differences could impact your experience and success. The treatment process usually begins with detox, which is unnecessary for every situation. Medically-assisted detox can help you to more safely and comfortably manage withdrawal symptoms. After detoxing, you could check in to an inpatient treatment center or start your outpatient treatment program. The specific length of your treatment and the therapies and services used will be tailored to suit your situation. After completing the treatment program, a recovering substance abuser may continue to seek support through various 12-step groups and group and individual therapy programs.
However, there are key differences between a non-gender-specific treatment program and a women’s treatment program. A co-occurrence with mental health issues is common with female substance abuse, so many women’s treatment programs are specifically structured to help women in this area. In addition, the group therapies and support groups in the treatment program will entirely comprise women. For some recovering substance abusers, this can create a more relaxed experience that enables them to thrive in the program. Emotional and psychological factors as well as triggers, can be specific to women as well. Women-specific treatment programs often cater to these specific needs to promote sobriety and health. An important aspect associated with treatment programs is learning coping mechanisms for triggers. Learning coping mechanisms that work well for the individual’s specific situation can promote a superior long-term outcome. Coping mechanisms taught in a women’s treatment program may specifically address common female triggers and challenges.
The Cost of Treatment for Alcoholism or a Drug Addiction
Cost is a major concern for many substance abusers who are interested in achieving sobriety and health through a treatment program. Some health insurance plans cover at least some of the costs of a substance abuse treatment program. Some plans may cover a detox, but patients may need to pay their deductible and co-pays. Because each health insurance plan varies by covered treatments, including treatment centers, the deductible, coverage limits and more, it may be advisable to contact your health insurance provider for specific details for your policy. Insurance coverage may not be limited based on selecting a women-specific treatment program.
Whether you need to pay for the entire cost of a treatment program out-of-pocket or you will be responsible for some of the costs that your insurance plan does not cover, be aware that some treatment centers offer a payment plan. Through a payment plan, you may be able to make manageable monthly payments while taking advantage of substance abuse treatment without delay.
Numerous factors play a direct role in the cost of drug and alcohol treatment. For example, public rehab and recovery facilities are often more affordable than treatment in private facilities. However, you may have a superior experience in a private facility. The cost of your treatment program will also depend on whether an inpatient or outpatient program is pursued. For inpatient and outpatient programs, the length of treatment can vary and impact the cost. Because so many factors will affect drug and alcohol abuse treatment, it is important to explore your options. This begins with a consultation with a treatment center and a call to your health insurance company.
Treatment Options Available
Some women who would benefit considerably from participating in a substance abuse treatment program do not believe this would be practical for their lives. For example, some people must continue working to pay their bills and provide for their families. Caring for children or older relatives may be a concern as well. Some of the same pressures contributing to substance abuse may prevent women from seeking the care they need.
There are numerous treatment options available to accommodate many needs and concerns. An outpatient program, for example, may require you to visit the treatment center for a few hours each day. This can allow you to continue going to work and meeting all of your personal responsibilities. Outpatient programs may provide group and individual therapy sessions, focus on health and nutrition, teach coping mechanisms, and support recovery in other ways.
Outpatient treatment programs are well-suited for some individuals, but inpatient treatment may be more effective in other cases. With an inpatient program, you will check in to a residential facility. These facilities may provide private or shared bedrooms as well as home-like accommodations. The programs and services offered in an inpatient program may be similar to those provided in an outpatient program. However, an inpatient program has a structured schedule with services and activities provided throughout the day. They also offer 24-hour support, removing the substance abuser from daily triggers and challenges that may otherwise impede the recovery process.
Some individuals may be at a higher risk of relapse after completing a treatment program. These individuals may have strong triggers in their daily lives, an abusive home environment or other problematic factors. If this is the case for you, you may benefit from spending time in a sober living facility. This is a supportive, safe, drug-free and alcohol-free environment that enables you to come and go as desired. Residing in a sober living facility may help some individuals to maintain their sobriety and to make healthy lifestyle changes before once again living on their own.
Learn More Today
Long Island Interventions strives to support women on their journey toward a sober, healthier lifestyle. Contact Long Island Interventions today to learn more about your rehab and recovery options.