When you consider the facts, you may begin to understand the dangerous nature of alcohol and what risk it poses to citizens of our country. Based on a report from the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, an estimated 17.6 million people suffer from some form of an alcohol use disorder (including binge drinking, alcohol abuse, and full-blown alcoholism). In total, that means that about 1 in 13 adults will fall victim to this degenerative brain disorder. Ultimately, out of this ratio, about 100,000 people will die as a direct result of consuming unsafe amounts of alcohol.
Although the problems associated with alcohol consumption (including cancer and hepatitis) might affect both sexes in the same manner, we must not forget that men are four times more likely to develop severe behavioral problems like alcohol dependency and habitual drinking. In fact, some particularly nasty health disorders and illnesses are 100% exclusive to the male sex, while some men will experience more common problems at a much higher rate than their female counterparts.
While women’s health is inarguably a topic that requires continuous support, we must not forget that men fall victim to terrible problems, as well. Let’s take a closer look at some of the ways that alcohol can negatively affect men and some of the disorders, illnesses, and sicknesses that are exclusive to their sex.
What Sets Women Apart
Based on medical reports, women generally suffer from the effects of alcohol much more severely than their male counterparts, at least where health risks are concerned. In fact, alcohol-induced illnesses like cirrhosis and alcohol hepatitis occur more frequently and much faster in women. Additional reports show that women who are addicted to alcohol (or suffer from alcohol abuse) have a higher risk of developing liver cancer and other digestive cancers and dying from cirrhosis more than alcohol-dependent men.
Men Suffer from Higher Rates of Injury
Although they can also develop digestive cancers and cirrhosis, alcoholic men exhibit a higher risk of being injured as a result of their brain disorder. Based on a report conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), men take more risks when they are drunk, which ultimately results in more incidences of death and hospitalization than women. Consider these statistics:
- Men are 2 times more likely to have a BAC (blood alcohol content) of <0.08%.
- Men are at a higher risk of suffering from a motor vehicle accident (MVA) caused by a drunk driving incident than their female counterparts.
- Men suffer from alcohol poisoning more often than women and experience a higher rate of suicide (and suicidal thinking).
- Drunk men are severely aggressive and are 70 times more likely to inflict harm to a child while they are in this state.
So why is this the case for men? Why do they suffer from these problems more than women?
Medical research confirms that men have a higher tolerance for alcohol due to the simple fact that they have a lower body mass than women. As a result, men can drink more of these intoxicating substances and will not feel the effects of alcohol until it is too late. Perhaps this is why men are 400% more likely to suffer from alcohol-induced psychosis.
Digestive Health Problems
Based on research conducted by the School of Public Health (University of Minnesota), men who are alcoholics can experience a higher risk of dangerous digestive health problems. In a group of men and women around the age of 65, the study discovered that men are at a higher risk of dying from alcohol-induced liver cancer or contracting cancers of the mouth, throat, or esophagus. Likewise, men can potentially suffer from strokes, alcohol-induced liver diseases, or heart disease more than their female counterparts.
Sexual and Hormonal Problems Induced by Alcohol
Overall, these problems related to injuries and the digestive tract take place over the long-term, but men can suffer from a variety of dangerous conditions related to the sexual/reproductive system that occur after short to mid-term drinking habits.
Once men consume alcohol, their testicles (one of the primary male sex organs) begin to perform poorly, and the body no longer produces healthy levels of male hormones. As a result, alcoholic men will suffer from a variety of frightening conditions including erectile dysfunction, impotence, infertility, and loss of hair (face and chest). Even more disturbing, men will develop a disorder called gynecomastia, where they begin to develop abnormal breast tissue due to fluctuating hormones. Fortunately, some of these problems can be reversed through surgical procedures and treatment programs involving medication.
However, some circumstances related to excessive alcohol use can make the situation even worse, even if a man is taking part in treatment programs. As a direct result of hormone imbalance caused by excessive alcohol consumption, medications that help erectile dysfunction (Viagra, Levitra, and Cialis) will be rendered completely null and void.
So, as we can see, while women clearly suffer from severe forms of alcohol-related diseases, men can fall victim to a wide variety of physical and chemical problems (all stemming from a condition that can be prevented without treatment programs).
Seeking Treatment for Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism
At The Recover, we fully understand how difficult the treatment process can be for addicts through our daily work to help these individuals overcome this terrible, painful disease. Although many people believe they can overcome their problems without help, residential rehabilitation treatment programs are still an essential step on the road to recovery. Although the path to health and happiness might not be an easy one to take, you can finally enter the threshold to freedom with the help of a loving, supporting team. Additional aspects like counseling and psychological care can ensure you address underlying psychological issues that ultimately led you to become an addict. From here, you can build an infrastructure that will help you live your life with entering relapse, all with the help of a solid residential rehabilitation treatment program.
An unbiased and substance abuse and mental health news provider, The Recover works hard to help victims of drug abuse or addiction discover the right residential rehabilitation treatment programs in their local areas. We also provide detailed information concerning West Virginia Centers for addiction recovery. For more information, contact us today at (888) 510-3898 to learn more about our comprehensive drug and alcohol addiction treatment program.