Alcohol is killing more people, and younger. The biggest increase is among women.

The rising number of people in the United States who have been killed by alcohol in the last decade has been obscured by the opioid epidemic. As opioid overdose death of about 72,000 people a year has grabbed America’s attention, the slower moving epidemic of alcohol has continued its acceleration as well, especially in the southern states and the nation’s capital. The 2015 National Survey on Drug Use and Health reported that an estimated 88,000 people died from alcohol-related causes – through suicide and diseases like cancer, liver cirrhosis among others. While teen deaths from drinking were down about 16 percent during the same period, deaths among people aged 45 to 64 rose by about 25%. Taking into account the increased risk of death with age, alcohol has been increasingly the cause of premature death in middle-aged and older adults. Between 2008 and 2014, the rate of ER visits involving acute alcohol consumption rose nearly 40 percent, according to the study in the journal Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research. For chronic alcohol use, the rate rose nearly 60 percent, with women leading the rate increase.

Women’s encounter with alcohol abuse and addiction, in contrast with their male counterpart, is often known to be more of a private matter. While men can be easily be spotted at bars and parties, drinking till they crash and burn, thereby showing their exposure to a possible alcohol problem, most women can conceal their alcohol addiction for a very long time. This makes it difficult for loved ones to intervene and offer help.

A typical alcohol abuse dependence and addiction trajectory for women starts with a drink of wine in the evening to unwind and cope with the daily work stress – either in a professional setting or home with children. Author and podcast co-host Stefanie Wilder-Taylor, the writer of “Sippy Cups Are Not for Chardonnay,” believes this stems from stubborn gender roles and norms surrounding stress. “Moms just aren’t going to call home and say they’re stopping for a couple of drinks after work with friends or going to the gym to unwind,” says Stefanie. She goes on to say that not complying with their perceived roles as moms and homemakers, makes them feel they are failing as parents when compared with other moms. So they drink wine while they make dinner and, as it often happens in these cases before they realize it becomes a nightly pattern where they can easily go from functional alcoholics to full-blown alcohol addict.

This pattern describes the plight of many of the women who become addicted to alcohol. Reaching out for help may be difficult and while women are more likely to seek help on their own many will require the help of loved ones. If you or someone you love is struggling with alcohol abuse and addiction, finding a treatment program that offers comprehensive treatment to diagnose and treat not only the addiction but also underlying mental health conditions, is the key to greatly increase the chances of successful recovery. Equally important is to find a program that offers evidence-based gender-specific therapies that provides screening and treatment for trauma-related issues.

At Florida Center for Recovery we have been treating clients struggling with alcohol addiction since 2002 through a structured series of individual and group therapies with gender specific sessions and specialized programs. Our Florida addiction treatment center offers alcohol rehab programs with all inclusive inpatient detox providing and array of evidence-based and holistic complimentary therapies. Below is a list of our treatment highlights. For information about programs, insurance and admissions, please contact us at: (800) 851-3291.