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Men and Alcoholism. The Key Differences Between Men, Women and Their Dependencies on Alcohol

Very manly man drinks a beer but looks sad because he knows his addiction to alcohol is out of control. Alcohol affects everyone differently. There are patterns, of course, but everyone has their own relationship with alcohol and the effect it has on them. Gender dictates a fair amount of the effect alcohol has on the human body, both in the short term and over the course of our entire lives. Women, on average, tend to have less body mass than men with less water in their bodies, and water plays a big part in how our bodies process alcohol. With less mass and water, alcohol is rampages through a woman’s body more quickly and subsequently leads to the serious health effects coming on sooner than with men. That being said, and the statistics do vary depending on the source, men are twice as likely to become addicted to alcohol than women, and some of the major reasons for this are psychology and what is considered socially acceptable.

A Few Key Differences

  • Men are more likely to become dependent on alcohol
  • Men metabolize alcohol better than women
  • Sexual dysfunction is common in men who abuse or are addicted to alcohol
  • Studies have shown that men are more likely to take risks while going through a phase in their lives of heavy and excessive drinking
  • The rate of suicide among male alcoholics is higher than women
  • The long-term negative health effects of alcohol abuse present more slowly in men
  • Numbers vary between men and women, but there are many diseases men and women can develop as a result of their addiction to alcohol, such as: Cirrhosis of the liver, liver failure, kidney failure, Korsakoff’s Syndrome, Wernicke’s disease, increased risk of cancer and higher rates of diabetes

This is by no means an extensive list, nor is it meant to serve as any sort of statement that men can drink and women can’t or any such thing. Men are simply affected by alcohol differently than women, but neither men nor women should drink excessively or not seek treatment if they believe their drinking is out of control. Alcoholism creeps up on someone, and infiltrates many important areas of their life. Since all of our lives are quite different, it is important to note both the similarities and differences in how alcohol abuse presents. Understanding the key differences between men and women, and how this may pertain to one’s alcohol abuse or addiction, can better prepare you or a loved one for treatment. Rehab is a trying time in someone’s life, and at Sobriety Home we believe that tailoring a rehabilitation plan specifically to an individual’s characteristics, personality, gender and many other factors is key to attaining better health and ending the cycle of alcohol abuse or addiction.