Substance Abuse Treatment Programs For Women Essay

2842 Words Jan 7th, 2015 12 Pages
Gender is an important variable to consider when planning and evaluating studies in all areas and at all levels of health-related research (Wizemann & Pardue, 2001). Gender is especially important in substance abuse treatment services because the background characteristics, substance abuse patterns, and personal histories of female substance users may differ from those of males. In the past, most research related to outcomes for substance abuse treatment programs involved male participants. However, new studies have emerged when the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) began sponsoring substance abuse research for women in the 1970s. Finklestein (1993) documented several studies conducted in the 1980s that focused on the shortage of treatment services available only to women. This was due to the 1980s crack epidemic that resulted in the high cost of medical issues including birth complications. According to a study conducted by the National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA) there are important differences between men and women who seek treatment for drug abuse. Women’s symptoms tend to advance quicker than men do. Women are more likely to live with a substance-abusing spouse than are men, use drugs in isolation (Marsh & Miller, 1985) and experience less family and parenting support than men (Kingree, 1995). NIDA (2000) states, women who enter treatment are more likely than men to have health problems, to have sought previous treatment, have attempted suicide, and have…

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