Sex disparity when it comes to alcohol and substance abuse disorders is notable. Men are culturally more prompt to drink and consume drugs than women.
But aside from cultural disparities, are men or women more likely to be alcoholics? Let’s find out.
What Makes Someone an Alcoholic?
Before we answer the question “Are men or women more likely to be alcoholics?” we need to first get clear on what it actually means to be an alcoholic.
Alcoholics are individuals who have developed a physical dependence on alcohol, which means their bodies have gotten used to having the substance in their bodies.
A physical need for alcohol can manifest in a variety of ways. In its simplest form, it’s considered to be a drinker’s inability to control how much they consume.
When subjects with alcohol dependence stop consuming alcohol, their physical dependence symptoms become more apparent, such as withdrawal symptoms or delirium tremens.
It goes without saying that alcoholics suffer from numerous shortcomings in their social lives and health as well.
Are Men More Likely to Be Alcoholics?
There are a variety of factors that influence alcoholism, including genetics, environment, and individual behavior.
There is a stereotype about alcoholism that men are more likely to drink alcohol than women, and research shows that men are actually more likely than women to drink excessively.
In a study, close to 58% of adult men reported drinking over the previous week when compared to only 49% of women. Research also shows that men are more likely to binge drink than women with approximately 21% of them reporting binge drinking, a lot less than the 13% reported by women.
However, in spite of the fact that men have traditionally consumed more alcohol and engaged in heavy drinking, recent research suggests that women are closing the gender gap in alcohol consumption.
The Gender Gap in Drinking
Alcohol consumption and heavy drinking have historically been more prevalent among men. There are a number of social and cultural factors that contribute to this trend.
For example, men are often socialized to view heavy drinking as a symbol of strength and masculinity, whereas women are encouraged to limit their alcohol consumption and maintain a more “ladylike” attitude. It appears, however, that the gender gap in drinking is narrowing.
According to researchers, the percentage of women who reported drinking alcohol in the past year increased from 44.9% to 48.3%. In contrast, the percentage of men who reported drinking alcohol in the past year decreased from 57.4% to 56.1%.
Despite women catching up to men when it comes to alcohol consumption, research suggests men are still more likely to become alcoholics.
According to research from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, men are twice as likely as women to develop alcoholism. Additionally, there is increasing evidence that men are more likely than women to suffer from alcohol-related health issues.
Additionally, men are more likely to develop alcoholism at a younger age than women—not looking so well for boys.
Talking to a Recovery Expert
Now that you know the answer to “Are men or women more likely to be alcoholics?” you might be wondering what to do if you are a gender that’s more prone to alcoholism. If so, then it’s time to get help.
Elysium Healthcare offers bespoke treatments to each gender ensuring your program is tailored to benefit you.
Contact Elysium today for a consultation and speaks to one of our recovery experts