One of the newest buzzwords in mental health and substance addiction these days is “gender-specific” programming. The majority of people refer to research, services, preparation, and care for women focused on a better view of women. Previously, it was thought that “one size fits all.”One strategy was to provide equal opportunity opportunities for men and women by ignoring gender gaps. Another potentially harmful approach has been to focus study and therapy only on results from studies with men, rather than considering why they still extend to women.
The Difference in Genders
Men and women both suffer from psychiatric illnesses or mental health simultaneously, but the categories of disorders vary. Men are more prone to substance dependence and antisocial personality disorders. Women are most likely to suffer from anxiety, affective, and somatization disorders.
There are also variations in hormonal reactions to alcohol between men and women. Women who use and abuse alcohol and other drugs for shorter periods and minor consumption than men have negative health consequences. Women enter substance abuse treatment at about the same age as men but with a more concise history of substance abuse and more severe consequences. Women, rather than men, downplay the dangers of their drinking and are more likely to get their drinking encouraged by their partners. Because of the stigma associated with feminine addiction, female alcoholics are more inclined to pursue help from primary care facilities rather than substance dependency programs.
Even though men are at a higher risk of being exposed to multiple stressful experiences, some reports show that women have a higher incidence of PTSD than men; Women have a greater chance of developing PTSD after being subjected to stressful experiences, explaining the difference. Witnessing violent incidents that occur to others, for example, resulted in slightly women who have been exposed have a higher risk of developing PTSD than men who have been exposed to such substances.
Women are more likely to be victims of personal violence as children and adults, while men are more likely to be in physically dangerous situations. According to a prospective survey, within two weeks of the attack, 94 per cent of female rape victims meet symptom requirements for PTSD. While the prevalence of PTSD declined with time, three months after the attack, 47 per cent of those who had also been raped met the PTSD criterion.
Some research suggests that the correlation between PTSD and drug dependence is more excellent in women than in men: Women who drink are more likely than men to be sexually assaulted. Outpatient substance abuse care for women is slightly more likely than outpatient drug abuse treatment for men to report sexual and physical abuse history.
Implications for Treatment
Considering the sociocultural meaning, A stressful experience is when one’s ability to cope is overwhelmed. It’s critical to understand their positions, pressures, and even prejudices embodied in our culture when dealing with any community that is usually or often powerless. Traumatic experiences, such as the following, can exacerbate a woman’s or a child’s sense of powerlessness:
- Physical inadequacy
- Emotional vulnerability
- Economic vulnerability
When dealing with trauma patients, the problem or idea of empowerment is more than a cliche in a mental health operation. More healing practices focus on being emotionally healthier, financially independent, more in control of painful feelings, and developing a better self-image as a woman.
It also implies that we must consider the function of authority in the care environments where we practice. Specific counselling issues, like a male therapist/female client. Problems of substance abuse care environments and models that stress a person’s powerlessness over drugs. Issues relating to seclusion in mental health or inpatient hospitalization environments. The context and desires of everyday life for women.
The National Women’s Resource Center conducted a study of recent research on gender-specific programming and discovered that these models share several core tenets.
The overriding idea continues to be that inclusive care and therapy must be based on a thorough interpretation of women’s everyday lives and needs.
Examples of Those Providers Include:
- Identify and capitalize on women’s assets;
- Avoid confrontational tactics;
- Teach coping mechanisms focused on women’s perspectives, with an open mind to women’s assessments of challenging circumstances.
- Make arrangements for women’s basic needs, such as childcare;
- Maintain an excellent female presence on your team;
- Encourage female bonding.
- Finkelstein (1996) stresses the importance of rethinking women’s models in light of the significance of relationships in their lives. Get the following scenario:
- Being married to someone who has a drug abuse problem puts women at a higher risk of having their substance abuse issues than men.
- Women with children also neglect both drug abuse and homeless programs to fear losing custody of their children.
- Women are much more likely than men to be lost as a result of marital problems.
The area of drug abuse has been a pioneer in recognizing that a woman’s relationships with her children or a substance-abusing boyfriend, for example, will affect both recovery and relapse (Clark, 1999). Researchers, physicians, and veterans of mental illness have, on the other hand, told the field about the role of trauma in the formation of mental health symptoms. Programs for women with dual conditions increasingly recognize that therapies are just a tiny part of a woman’s life and that to be effective, they must consider the woman’s relationship to herself, her family, and her culture.
When I’m feeling confused by the many topics of mental health to consider when planning or delivering care, such as trauma, mental health, drug dependence, gender, and race, I find it beneficial to remember a fundamental maxim: Pay attention to the customer. Allow the women to share the realities of their lives and the methods they use to achieve healing. Our most important weapon is their voice!
Smoking and physical inactivity account for up to two-thirds of all coronary deaths and are linked to significantly higher mortality in various diseases, including cancer and diabetes. We performed a comprehensive analysis of studies exploring clustering or co-occurrence of risk behaviours and their predictors since risk behaviours are believed to co-occur in individuals.
The most frequently reported risk behaviour cluster in general adult populations was alcohol misuse and smoking. There was clear evidence of clustering between sexual risk behaviour and drug abuse by young adults. The best predictor of participating in various risk behaviours was socioeconomic status. This indicates that approaches addressing multiple risk behaviours, either sequentially or simultaneously, maybe practical, mainly where clustering is evident. Furthermore, because of the close correlation with socioeconomic status, there is scope for intervention at the social or environmental stage.
For certain people, admitting that they have a problem with drugs or alcohol is the first step toward rehabilitation. The next move is to find a recovery facility that will assist them with regaining their physical fitness, satisfaction, and well-being.
An individual should choose from a variety of treatment options. Many patients with severe addictions, for example, go through a recovery program before entering rehab. Others may decide to start their treatment in an inpatient or outpatient environment. They attend support meetings and counselling sessions after recovery and are advised to reinforce the lessons learned in rehab.
Individualized interventions for addiction are needed to resolve the disease’s signs and root factors and the effects of drug abuse on various aspects of a person’s life. This encompasses their desire to socialize, their physical and emotional health, and the repercussions at work, home, education, or the law. Depression should be treated with a variety of therapies.
Medication plays a vital role in many drug therapy protocols for Mental Health when paired with counselling and behavioural therapies to aid in a patient’s rehabilitation. Various drugs can be used to help relieve cravings and control abstinence from heroin, alcohol, benzodiazepines, and other sedatives.
To treat people’s mental health addicted to heroin, drugs like buprenorphine and methadone and antagonist treatment with naltrexone can be used. 2Medications like acamprosate, disulfiram, and naltrexone can be used to reduce ongoing drinking activity in people recovering from alcoholism. Off-label drugs can help with symptom relief during detox and recovery and resolve any co-occurring psychiatric or physical problems.
It’s important to remember that there’s no such thing as a “one-size-fits-all” solution of Mental Health to addiction treatment. Whatever rehab course you take, make sure it has what you’ll need to make a full recovery. It’s not quick to recover from an addiction. Smoking and physical inactivity account for up to two-thirds of all coronary deaths and are linked to significantly higher mortality in various diseases, including cancer and diabetes.
To attain and sustain long-term sobriety, a considerable amount of determination and self-discipline would be needed. On this trip, though, you will never be alone. During treatment, you’ll form close bonds with other addicts who understand what you’re going through. Furthermore, through this period, your family, friends, and other loved ones have your best interests at heart.
Your ability to heal from addiction is determined by your mental health and how much effort you put into it. Find out how depression is handled in the sections below to get a clearer idea of what to expect.
Ben Lesser is one of the most sought-after experts in health, fitness and medicine. His articles impress with unique research work as well as field-tested skills. We are honored to have Ben writing exclusively for Dualdiagnosis.org.