Sep 09

5 Things You May Not Know about Women and Alcohol

5 Things You May Not Know about Women and Alcohol

5 things you may not know about women and alcoholBoth men and women drink but men and women are different when it comes to alcohol. Moderate drinking has been touted to have some pretty significant health benefits for your cardiovascular system. And this can be great for people who want to unwind over dinner. But as most of us know the dangers of alcohol especially for women outweigh the benefits. It is especially important for women to be aware of these dangers because they are different than men. When it comes to women and alcohol, it poses specific risks.

Here are 5 things you may not know about women and alcohol

Women and alcohol #1: More women are binge drinking. Binge drinking is the exact opposite of moderate drinking. For women, binge drinking is defined as having four or more drinks in a single period. Most women binge drinking today average about six drinks. According to the CDC earlier this year, nearly 14 million women in the United States binge drink around three times a month. Not only that but women with an income over 75,000 dollars a year are more likely to binge as well as women who are between the ages of 18 and 34. High school girls are also more likely to binge. According to the CDC, 1 in 5 teenage girls binge drink. Binge drinking is dangerous it can cause unintentional injuries, alcohol poisoning, liver disease and stroke.

Women and alcohol #2: Many women may think keeping up with the guys when it comes to dinking is no big deal, but that just isn’t true. Women’s bodies tolerate alcohol differently than men’s for reasosn that aren’t quite understood yet. NIAA or the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism points out that it could be that women’s bodies have less water per pound than men’s. So if a man and woman who weigh the same amount also drink the same amount, the woman will likely have a higher BAC because the alcohol disperses in water and her body has less of it.

Women and alcohol #3: Drinking becomes a problem for women quicker. This is largely because wmen;s bodies handle alcohol differently than men’s. Because of this difference women are more likely to be at risk for alcohol related health problems. These risks include health disease and conditions that include liver disease, heart disease, breast cancer and also alcohol dependence. NIAA considers the low risk drinking limit for women as being seven drinks per week and no more than three drinks in one sitting.

Women and alcohol #4: A German study published last year found that alcoholism may be deadlier in women. It concluded that alcohol dependence is twice as deadly for women as it is for men. The death rate for alcohol dependent women was four time that of a sample of comparable non-addicted 18 to 64 year old women. It was only double for men. The why of this is still unknown but it is assumed that the effect of alcohol on women is much more severe.

Women and alcohol #5: Luckily women seek treatment for alcoholism sooner. A study that included more than 500 males and females found that women who abuse alcohol usually try to get help four to five years earlier than their male counterparts. The why of this is also unknown but it is hypothesized that women may attach less social stigma to drinking problems than men and therefore might be more likely to report their problem drinking.

There are also studies that have been done that show that drinking in women ups the risk of breast cancer and that NO AMOUNT of alcohol is safe during pregnancy. Those facts are pretty well known though. Regardless of the reasons it might be safe to go ahead and say that women are better off just not drinking unless they are going to drink moderately.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/09/03/women-alcohol-facts_n_3831152.html?utm_hp_ref=womens-health

Jul 15

Women in Recovery

Women in Recovery

Here is a fun fact about women in recovery, Marty Mann, NCADD’s founder, was the first woman to recover from alcoholism in Alcoholics Anonymous (AA).  As a result, NCADD has always been dedicated to increasing public awareness and support for women struggling with addiction to alcohol and drugs. 

Women are the fastest-growing segment for substance abuse in the United States. In fact, according to the Federal Center for Substance Abuse Prevention, about 2.7 million women in the United States abuse drugs or alcohol. Even more frightening is that the majority who need treatment do not receive it because:

•They are afraid of losing, or being separated from, their families

•They view their substance use as a social activity or habit, rather than an addiction that is disrupting their lives

•They believe that their substance abuse is the outcome of anxiety or depression, treating the mental health issue while ignoring the addiction

•They are afraid or embarrassed to admit they are struggling with addiction, and hide their drug or alcohol use from family and friends

There are special issues that women face in addiction treatment and recovery. The traditional wisdom of the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous says that women progress faster in addiction. Now the research is telling us the “why” and more importantly “what” can be done to assist women in recovery.

Women start using for different reasons, get addicted differently, progress faster, recovery differently and relapse for different issues. Due to shame and stigma, women may be more likely to drink/take pills when alone and hide it from others. Some women have their home as their bar and may have three martini play dates with their friends and their children. Those with stressful careers may use to keep up the image that they can raise three kids, have a high power job and still keep up! With the stimulant drugs some women start using to lose weight. While many women are high functioning and may be able to keep up the appearance of being fine they are unraveling on the inside.

Physiologically women metabolize alcohol and drugs differently than men. Physically one drink for a woman has twice the impact physiologically on a woman that it does on a man. That’s not just about getting drunk, that’s impact to the organs, to the brain. Mixing types of drugs makes it even more damaging. When mixing chemicals one and one is not necessarily two. Women also tend to have more access to prescribers of medications which can make it even more dangerous. Yes, there is physical damage but it may pale in comparison to the emotional and spiritual damage done by addiction. When a woman is addicted it can impact the entire family system – since women are generally the central organizing factors in their network (caregiver to aging parent, parent to children, caregiver of older partner, etc).

Women are complicated! In addition a female’s distinctive physiology, mental health issues, hormonal differences, spiritual concerns and as well as life circumstances may affect their experience in addiction and recovery. Treatment and recovery are most successful when these individualized needs are taken into account. The good news is that recovery is natural for women. Addiction is the unnatural state. The female brain is actually wired for connection! Many women find that the support of 12 Step programs and other support groups are exactly what they need to live a life free of chemicals. Recovery is the most critical part of an addict’s journey and many find that in recovery they have a life beyond their wildest dreams.

 

 http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/remarkable-recovery/201203/addiction-and-gender-recovery-women

Apr 22

Women and Wine

 

Women and Wine

How many women put in a full day of work at the office, come home, take care of the kids, put their feet up, and have a glass or two of wine to relax? For a growing number of women, this has become a daily routine. Women and wine has started to become the social norm.

The connection between women and wine is a strong one. Women drink 60 percent of the wine consumed in the U.S. Studies show that women drink wine for a number of different reasons. They may feel that wine is “healthier” than other kinds of alcoholic drinks. They may drink wine at the end of the day to relax. Some women see wine as a healthful beverage which matches well with food, and as an “elegant,” lifestyle choice. Wine is socially acceptable, and many women find that their peers drink just as much as they do.

So what’s wrong with having wine at the end of the night. Well, aside from the fact that the number of calories in two five-ounce glasses of red wine is equal to those in a single snickers bar, if you’ve had two drinks, you are already drinking more than you should.

Moderate drinking is defined as one drink a day for women and two for men. Why the discrepancy? Women’s bodies don’t process alcohol in the same way as men. Women are smaller, and tend to have more body fat than men, so the same amount of alcohol can affect a women’s body more than that of a man’s.

Women and wine has become so common that some women who drink wine daily don’t even know that they binge drink. Binge drinking is consuming four or more alcoholic drinks in a two to three hour period.

When many women think of the dangers of drinking, they think of hard liquor and beer. Wine has been touted to have many health benefits. However, wine is not innocuous, and many of the health benefits are negligible, especially if you drink more than one glass a night.

Women and wine can have some very dangerous health effects. Drinking on a regular basis can cause liver damage and cancer. But even light drinking can increase the likelihood of breast cancer.

Other, lesser known effects of women and wine can include:

  • Alcohol raises blood temperature, causing or worsening hot flashes.
  • Alcohol can cause insomnia, even with moderate use.
  • Drinking can cause or worsen irritability, mood changes, and depression.

Though there are some health benefits to drinking a small amount of red wine in the evenings, these benefits can be obtained in other foods that are rich in antioxidants like red grapes, grape juice, grape seed oil, deep green veggies, melon, pumpkin, blueberries, and peppers.

For women in wine it seems like the bottom line is- if you’re going to drink, keep it to one glass a night. And if you can’t manage only one glass or you have noticed that your consumption has become greater and greater, it may be time to get some help.

Source:

http://www.lhj.com/health/stress/relaxation-techniques/should-women-drink-wine-for-their-health/

Nov 02

How to tell your husband you’re going to rehab

How to tell your husband youre going to rehab

How to tell your husband you’re going to rehab

The truth of the matter is that if you have been in living with your husband and/or seeing him in any sort of regular basis during your addiction, he more than likely already knows you have a problem with addiction and need rehab. As addicts, we often think we are hiding our drug use and drinking from the people we care about the most but in reality, it’s actually quite obvious. Addiction is a disease that can only be hidden for so long, and then the signs become absolutely impossible to cover up. Anyone who knew you before addiction took control of your life already knows that something is terribly wrong, especially your husband.

When you begin to come up with what you want to say to your husband about going to rehab, it’s probably best to assume that your husband already knows you are struggling with a drug or alcohol addiction. When you stop to think about it, it is likely he has even attempted to talk to you about your addiction in the past. Don’t insult his intelligence by denying how long you have been trying to cover your tracks. Be honest with him, and he will be more receptive to the conversation.

The most important part of telling your husband you’re going to rehab will be the part where you tell him what you are going to do to help yourself. You are going to want to tell him how sorry you are for any hurt you caused him and you can do, but you should also have some information to share with him about getting into a drug alcohol rehab.

You need to explain to him that you are ready and willing to acknowledge your addiction and that you are going to go to rehab. More importantly, you need to share with your husband that you are ready to get better and go to rehab. You may not have all the answers to give your husband about going to rehab about where or when you will enter into drug rehab center or maybe you will. But all you need to convey is that you are ready to do what needs to be done in order to get your life back and your relationship with him back. This is how you will tell your husband you’re going to rehab.

Your husband may be upset with some of the things you have done during your struggle with addiction, but he will always love you so the fact that you are getting help and going to rehab is probably going to be of comfort to him. The conversation you have with your husband about going to rehab and to admit you are an addict may be a difficult discussion, but it is one that you have to face and you will be glad you did.

Once your husband sees you are being honest and humble, he will most likely be more than willing to help you through going to rehab and provide you with a great support system during your drug alcohol rehab. Once you have this conversation with your husband about going to rehab, you will be surprised at his reaction and how much more prepared you are to finally change your life for the better.