Women and Alcohol: Why You are at Risk

Alcohol addiction is not gender based but women due to body weight and usually height have a lower tolerance to alcohol. According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, they also have a greater risk of disease and addiction associated with alcohol. With all of the focus on pregnancy and alcohol, people tend to ignore the other risk factors that women have when it comes to alcoholism.

Increased Risks of Alcohol Related Diseases

Women are at an increased risk for many of the alcohol related diseases. Their lighter weight and different metabolism makes them more vulnerable than men to the traditional diseases associated with high alcohol consumption. These risks are:

Liver Damage – women are more likely to have:

Women and Alcohol

Women who abuse alcohol are more likely to suffer liver damage.

  • fatty livers, a buildup of fat around the liver that indicates alcohol overuse and poor liver function
  • hepatitis, a swelling of the liver and lower liver function often leading to yellow skin, nails, and eyes
  • inflammation of the liver, which lowers liver function and inhibits the liver’s ability to process alcohol
  • cirrhosis of the liver, a disease where the liver develops hardened places and eventually destroys the livers ability to function, remove toxins, and often results in the need for a transplant or death

Heart Disease – women are more likely to have:

  • high blood pressure due to alcoholism
  • decreased heart function
  • heart valve swelling
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Brain Disorders

Cancers – women are more likely to develop:

  • increased likelihood of cervical cancer due to alcohol use
  • increased risk of breast cancer due to alcohol use

Although men are susceptible to these risks, they are not nearly as likely to develop these conditions. If you are an female alcoholic, it is important to seek treatment as soon as possible. To find a treatment center today call 800-654-0987, before these conditions start to affect you.

A Look at Gender Differences in Drug and Alcohol Abuse

Increased Risks of Traditionally Nonalcohol Related Diseases

Alcoholism in women also increases their chances of getting diseases that are not traditionally related to alcohol. Although some of these are possible to get without alcohol involvement, alcohol increases a woman’s risk of getting them. Some of these diseases are:

  • osteoporosis – a thinning of the bones due to calcium depletion
  • infertility – the inability to have children
  • miscarriages – although it is not good to become pregnant while you are drinking, alcohol increases the risk of having a miscarriage even if you are not drinking at the time
  • higher risk of mood disorders – women who are at a higher risk of mood disorders increase this risk when they drink
  • risk of physical abuse – women who are alcoholics are more likely to find themselves in abusive relationships
  • risk of sexual violence – women who drink are at risk from sexual predators
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Decreased Access to Treatment

Women who are alcoholics also suffer from the decreased ability to receive treatment due to:

  • childcare
  • lack of women only treatment
  • inability to pay for treatment

Fortunately there is help for women who need treatment for alcohol addiction. All you have to do is call 800-654-0987. We can help you overcome the challenges and get the treatment that you need before it’s too late.