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Do Women Experience Drug Effects Differently than Men?

In spite of these differences, drug use by men and women is not well studied. In the past twenty-five years, researchers have begun to investigate how drug effects differ between men and women in RENEW WELLNESS & RECOVERY Women’s Residential Treatment.

Women are less likely to have a drug abuse problem than men.

Men over the age of 18 abuse drugs at a rate nearly two times higher than women. The reason for this is not known. But these figures are false.

NIDA, the National Institute on Drug Abuse states that males are more likely than females to use drugs. This is because men have more easy access to these drugs. If both men and women had equal access to drugs, they would have the same likelihood of using them.

Recent years, more women are using drugs.

It is also reflected among the younger generation where numbers are similar. According to Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Agency (SAMHSA), 6,9 percent of girls and boys aged 12-17 years are addicted to some type of drugs.

Different reasons are given by women for taking drugs.

Women and men use drugs differently. According to a study conducted on females between the ages of 8 and 22 years, low self-esteem as well as peer pressure, depression, and other factors increased their risk for drug abuse.

Women are two times more likely than males to suffer clinical depression, even though men also face these challenges.

The abuse of women is also more common, especially in terms of physical abuse and abuse on the emotional level. This abuse has a strong correlation to drug abuse. * From 1994 to 2010, 80 percent were female victims of intimate partners violence. 50% of female rape victim are younger than 18. The U.S. has raped 2 million males, but 23 million females.

Many people experience psychological difficulties as a result of these traumatic, violent or sexual experiences. Many suffer from post-traumatic disorder (PTSD).

This is why it's no surprise that up to 80 percent (sometimes both) of the women seeking drug treatment are victims of sexual or physical violence. 59 per cent of women seeking treatment for drug addiction have PTSD.

The issues that women face are simply not the same as those faced by men.

Drugs have different effects on women compared to men.

When they use drugs, male and female do not react in the same manner. It makes sense, then, that men and women would process drugs in different ways.

Drug addictions to heroin or prescription medications

Men and women react differently to heroin, as do they also tend to use the drug differently. Women tend to inject heroin at a lower rate. They are usually under pressure by a partner.

Opioid prescriptions are a completely different story. According to research, women suffer from chronic pain more than men. A 33 percent higher proportion of women visit doctors. Maybe this is why women become more dependent on prescription painkillers than men.

The stimulants cocaine and methamphetamine

NIDA says that the blood of men and women is different in how it breaks down cocaine. According to NIDA, men's blood plasma contains enzymes which break down the cocaine while women's blood red cells have more.

All of this, along with the hormonal changes that occur during the menstrual period, influence how women respond to cocaine.

These differences make women, in the end less susceptible to cocaine. They need more cocaine to achieve the same results, increasing their risk of dependence.

It is possible that women's hormones, and therefore their appetite, may also fluctuate.

Studies show stimulants also affect the brain of women differently. MRI scans have shown that stimulant-using women had smaller brains compared with men. It seems that, although more research must be conducted, stimulant addiction may have a greater impact on the brains of women.

MDMA is a drug similar to ecstasy, Molly or molly

MDMA is more potent for women. It's more likely that they will experience the hallucinogenic effects of MDMA, as well as have difficulty sleeping or feeling depressed.

The risk of hyponatremia increases when you have too much electrolytes and too little water in your body. It is a potentially deadly condition, with 90 percent of ecstasy cases occurring in women.

The differences may be due to hormonal differences.


Women are more likely to become addicted than men, but both have the same relapse rate. After treatment, women face a unique set of problems.

Women's hormones may affect their mood as well as cravings. Because women tend to be more depressed and have more traumas, even small shifts in mood could make a huge difference.

SAMHSA says that women must also develop new coping mechanisms because of their struggles to escape negative relationships. To find a new supportive group of friends, women may have to separate themselves from former drug-using romantic partners and old friends.

When women relapse, they are more likely to get help.

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