Prescription Painkillers: Source of Addiction for Many Women

2017-01-11T18:24:01+00:00 December 22nd, 2015|

Painkillers prescribed by doctors are becoming a starting point for an opioid addiction for more than half of female methadone clinic patients, according to research published in Biology of Sex Differences. The study explains that there are many differences in demographics between women and men, concluding that women need different addiction treatment approaches than men.

Why are Women Becoming Addicted?

Opioids are a family of drugs which include prescription pain killers such as OxyContin and codeine, as well as illicit drugs such as heroin. According to the study done by McMaster University researchers, results show that 52 percent of women and 38 percent of men reported doctor-prescribed painkillers as their first contact with opioid drugs. Women who were addicted to prescription painkillers were found to have more physical and psychological health problems, more childcare responsibilities, and were more likely to have a family history of psychiatric illness. Women were thought to have been prescribed painkillers more often than men because of a lower pain threshold and because they were more likely to seek medical care than men.

Treatment for Opioid Addiction

More women are becoming addicted to prescription painkillers, which means there is an increase in the number of women seeking treatment for opioid addiction. The problem with methadone treatment is that it’s based on studies which include few to no women at all. Since men and women have different emotional and physical needs, women need treatment options that are better suited for them. According to McMaster University researchers, most methadone treatment centers are geared towards predominantly young men who inject heroine, with few family or employment opportunities. But there has been a 30 percent increase in the number of patients becoming addicted to opioids through doctor prescribed painkillers, and a 60 percent decrease in injecting drug use. Opioid addiction through prescription painkillers is a growing problem and treatment programs should adapt to the changing profile of an opioid addict.

At Residence XII, the mission is to develop and provide the highest quality chemical dependency treatment programs and comprehensive services to meet the unique needs of women and their families. Because women tend to hide their alcohol abuse or drug abuse, and suffer more shame for it, Residence XII has designed all treatment programs around the special needs of women in treatment and recovery. The Residence XII inpatient treatment program focuses on the disease of addiction, guilt and shame, self-esteem, assertiveness, life skills for sobriety, nutrition and relationship issues.

About Residence XII

Residence XII offers drug rehab for women as well as alcohol treatment that empower women while leading them on their journey to recovery. At Residence XII, we welcome all women (+18) and aim to provide the highest quality inpatient and outpatient treatment for addiction available. Residence XII also offers a family program aimed at helping family members and loved ones understand how to best help the patient in recovery. Contact us for a free drug and alcohol assessment or to learn more about how we treat women with drug or alcohol dependency. Residence XII is state licensed by CARF (Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities) and a member of the NAATP (National Association of Addiction Treatment Providers).