Alcohol Rehab for Women
Women often face unique challenges when struggling with alcohol misuse and addiction, and may benefit from specialized, gender-specific care. Understanding the unique struggles women face with alcohol addiction and how gender-specific rehab can help can be an important first step in achieving recovery.
Women’s Alcohol Addiction Statistics
Every person who struggles with an alcohol use disorder (AUD) faces their own personal challenges, but sex and gender can play a role in addiction as well. While men are more likely to drink to excess and be diagnosed with alcohol use disorder, women are at a greater risk for serious side effects associated with alcohol.1,2 Studies show that:1–3
- Women’s bodies absorb alcohol faster, they feel the effects more quickly, and effects tend to last longer than in men.
- Women are at greater risk for chronic health problems, including cancer, due to drinking.
- Women may face additional strain on the heart and blood vessels.
- Women with alcohol use disorder AUD have death rates that are between 50 and 100 times higher than men.
- Women who are pregnant and struggling with an AUD are at risk of harming their babies.
- Women are more likely than men to experience panic attacks, depression, and anxiety as a result of their substance use.
- Women who are victims of domestic violence are at an increased risk of substance use.
Because of these and other gender-based issues, some may prefer a women’s-only rehab program that is dedicated to addressing all of the unique challenges women face.
Barriers to Treatment for Women
Women often face unique barriers to seeking treatment, such as:4,5
- Social stigma.
- Shame and guilt.
- Lack of childcare.
- Lack of family support.
- Transportation issues.
- Financial hardship.
Benefits of Alcohol Treatment for Women
The good news is that women-only (WO) rehab programs offer the same types of evidence-based interventions as mixed-gender treatment centers, but with a focus that may be more beneficial to women specifically. For example, women-only programs may offer:5
- Onsite childcare.
- Job skills training.
- Housing help.
- Parenting classes.
- Family and couples’ therapy.
- Trauma-focused care.
WO programs also tend to have a more supportive, less confrontational approach to group counseling than mixed-gender programs.5
Many women report that the absence of men allows them to speak more freely and open up during group discussions.6 There is great value for women to realize they have similar personal histories with other women, as it can help them feel less shameful about their own situations.6
Types of Addiction Treatment for Women
Women’s treatment programs can vary, but many will seek to provide patients with an individualized treatment plan and evidence-based treatment. Women-only alcohol rehab can take place in a number of settings, including:
- Inpatient rehab – Inpatient rehab (also known as residential rehab) is a treatment setting in which patients will live at a facility long term while receiving therapy, counseling, and addiction medications.
- Standard outpatient rehab – Outpatient treatment is often used as a follow-up to inpatient programs, and allows one to live at home and work while commuting in a few hours a week to receive treatment.
- Intensive outpatient (IOP) – Intensive outpatient programs (IOPs) are more intense treatment programs in which outpatient sessions are more frequent and regimented.
- Partial hospitalization (PHP)
- Aftercare – Aftercare is a follow-up to treatment and will often involve a patient attending support groups and practicing relapse prevention skills.
Women with children may prefer outpatient rehab programs over inpatient centers since they allow them to remain at home with their families while going through treatment.
Lengths of Women’s Alcohol Rehab
There is no set length for women’s alcohol rehab. Depending on the severity of a patient’s condition, treatment can last anywhere from a few weeks to several months, or longer. However, a few common treatment lengths include:
- 30-day rehab – 30-day rehab programs provide patients with standardized care in an inpatient or outpatient setting.
- 60-day rehab – 60-day rehab programs allow patients greater time to get acclimated to their treatment environment and work through underlying disorders and behaviors that may be contributing to alcohol addiction.
- 90-day rehab – 90-day rehab programs provide patients with long-term care, allowing them ample time to work towards recovery.
How to Choose the Best Women’s Alcohol Rehab
Research on substance use disorders has historically been disproportionally focused on men.7 But more and more treatment programs are starting to understand how to support women in recovery. Special considerations for women when seeking treatment may include:4
- Medical services: Gynecological care, family planning, and pediatric care for children should be addressed if needed.
- Education: Education on reproductive health, sexually transmitted diseases, child development, and nutritional counseling if needed.
- Mental health services: Trauma-informed care for women who have been the victims of abuse, or services for mental health disorders like depression or anxiety.
- Life skills: Money management, stress reduction, and healthy coping skills.
- Childcare services: For women with children who are entering treatment and may need childcare, help with school, and other family treatment services.
- Case management: For women who need help securing housing, employment, public assistance, transportation, and legal services.
- Peer support: Strong female role models and peer support can be essential aspects of ongoing recovery.
How to Find Alcohol Rehabs for Women
Addiction is a complex disease, but it is treatable. A professional rehab center can help you heal from alcohol addiction. Not sure where to start? A doctor or trained addiction professional can diagnose and recommend the right level of care to meet your treatment needs.
Ready to start your recovery? American Addiction Centers (AAC) is a leading provider of evidence-based treatment, offering women-only rehab at treatment centers across the country. Admissions navigators are available 24/7 to help answer questions you may have about treatment, find suitable women’s treatment programs near you, and help verify your insurance coverage. Call today to talk about your options.
Paying for Women’s Alcohol Rehab
The cost of alcohol rehab can vary greatly depending on a variety of factors. Where you attend treatment, how long treatment lasts, how intense treatment is, and what type of insurance plan one has can all affect what one pays. Women’s alcohol rehab programs similarly have no set price; as such, it’s a good idea to reach out to your insurance provider before committing to treatment to determine costs.
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