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Drug Addiction in Young Men

When it comes to drug addiction and young men, many people believe that this group is not as vulnerable as other groups, like women, the elderly and young teenagers. However, the fact of the matter is that young men are the most likely users of drugs and alcohol, and because of long-standing views and stereotypes regarding sex and gender issues, these men may not get the help that they need. Add to this the innate pride that keeps many men from reaching out for help, and it could easily be argued that young men are actually more at risk for addiction and alcoholism than other groups.

Some people argue that substance abuse and drug addiction treatment is the same for men as it is for women. However, statistics indicate that this is not at all accurate. According to the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction;

“Males outnumber females among drug users and clients attending drug treatment services. The number of females in relation to males is generally lower for the more illegal drugs and recent or frequent patterns of drug use. Increases in drug use among 15- to 16-year old males are usually accompanied by increases among females but tend to occur earlier or more rapidly among males.” (1)

Figures like these have been echoed in other studies internationally. Not only are young men the most likely group to abuse drugs and eventually become addicted, they are also the most at-risk group for dangers related to this lifestyle. In the U.S. young men are involved in more alcohol-related crashes than any other group. In fact, alcohol related deaths are the number one cause of mortality in young men in America. Says Dr. Ciaran Mulholland in an article for NetDoctor;

“Men are much more likely to be addicted to alcohol and other substances than women. Two thirds of attendees at Alcoholics Anonymous are men. Men in the 25 to 34 year age group were twice as likely as those in the 45 to 50 year old age group to report substance dependency. Alcohol and drug abuse are strongly associated with an increased suicide rate in men.” (2)

These differences between men and women also indicate a need for gender or individualized drug addiction treatment programs. For most men this might involve a higher level of Denial monitoring and management, while for others it might need to concentrate more heavily on treatment of the symptoms of Post Acute Withdrawal Syndrome. Whatever the case may be, most young men respond well to intensive treatment options such as:

Inpatient Treatment
Medically Monitored Inpatient Rehab
Outpatient Treatment
Day/Night Treatment

If a young man in your life is suffering from substance abuse and drug addiction, the time to get help is now. Young men may be strong and capable, but they are no more immune to addiction – nor more adept at handling it – than anyone else. The risks are real and include imprisonment and possibly death. It’s just not worth it to wait, so act now by calling the number at the top of your screen. Regardless of where you are or what time it is, we can help, but we can’t do anything if you don’t call.

(1) European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Addiction Differences in Patterns of Drug Use Between Women and Men
2006 Study

(2) Mulholland, Ciaran Men and Addiction
Accessed 12/30/2011

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