The Effects of Drug and Alcohol Abuse on Men
Anyone can become addicted to drugs or alcohol. However, many people are unaware of the unique difficulties that guys experience when it comes to substance usage. There are several reasons why men abuse drugs and alcohol more frequently than women, many of them are based on cultural “norms” or prejudices. The detrimental effects substance usage can have on men’s physical and mental health can be attributed to a number of variables.
Many men experience pressure to repress or disregard their emotions from an early age, and when they struggle with their mental health, they are frequently urged to “man up.” Many people use alcohol and drugs to cope with this, which can result in severe physical dependence if addressed.
In addition, men are more likely to develop a variety of illnesses linked to drug and alcohol use. This might make it challenging to identify addiction in the first place and complicate men’s addiction therapy.
Men Are More Likely Than Women To Abuse Particular Substances
Drug and alcohol effects on the body and the emergence of addiction in the brain are strongly influenced by biology. Men often need more of a given chemical in order to feel its effects because, on average, their bodies are larger than those of biological women. When it comes to alcohol, biological males typically need 7 drinks to get drunk compared to biological females who only need 4.
Men are also significantly more likely than women to take drugs as a result. Nearly 58% of adult males and 49% of adult women report drinking alcohol in the past 30 days, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Additionally, men are more prone than women to binge drink, with nearly 21% of men admitting doing so in the previous 30 days as opposed to only 13% of women. Men are more likely than women to report having an alcohol addiction (13% of adult men and 9% of women report having an alcohol use disorder), which is directly related to this pattern of excessive alcohol use.
Men are more likely than women to abuse a variety of drugs as well as alcohol. Generally speaking, men abuse most illicit drug types more frequently than women. The rate of illicit drug use among men and women is shown in the graph below.
Problems With Substance Use And Infertility
Infertility brought on by substance use is one of the main distinctions between how drug and alcohol usage affects men and women. Drugs, both prescribed and illegal, can affect your ability to conceive. Fortunately, after you stop using the substance, this can usually be reversed. However, this is not always the case.
It’s always crucial to speak with a doctor or addiction specialist before making any decisions about starting or discontinuing substance use because there are many substances that can effect your sexual performance, health, and fertility, some of which may be legal and even vital for your health.
Men’s sexual and reproductive health may be impacted by a variety of substances, including:
Antidepressants may be necessary for your mental health in addition to being lawful. However, if being a parent is your goal, you might want to speak with your psychiatrist or primary healthcare practitioner first. The most often given drugs for depression and anxiety are selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, or SSRIs. They might, however, result in a lack of excitement or a failure to perform sexually, which is sexual dysfunction.
Long-term Opioid use can reduce your body’s synthesis of testosterone, which lowers your sperm quality and quantity. The intensity and consequences of your substance usage rely greatly on how far it has advanced, similar to the majority of health disorders brought on by substance misuse.
An anabolic steroid
Anabolic steroids can seriously impair male fertility by interfering with your body’s sperm production. These medicines are frequently used by bodybuilders and athletes to improve performance, although they might have negative effects on the body. Fortunately, sperm production returns for the majority of persons within a year of quitting, though it might never entirely return in the case of heavy users.
Meth is a highly addictive, risky drug that has a variety of negative physical effects on your body. The use of meth can raise blood pressure and respiration rates, which, in certain cases, can cause mortality. Although there hasn’t been much research on the effects of meth use on fertility, it has been found in certain studies that it lowers sperm motility, which can diminish the likelihood of getting pregnant.
Many men turn to substance abuse due to stigma and peer pressure.
While many people believe that peer pressure only applies to young adults, the truth is that many adults also experience pressure from their peers to use drugs or alcohol. Friends, coworkers, family, and even media figures can have an impact on someone’s attitudes and judgment.
Your coworkers can extend an invitation to go out for drinks after work and promise that everyone will have a good time. In other cases, a television program or film may depict drinking or doing drugs to demonstrate “how manly they are.” Many males are influenced by these subtly negative social pressures to lead a life of drug and alcohol usage.
Some guys learn to be “tough” or “emotionless” from an early age. They are frequently informed that having sentiments of grief or insecurity makes them less of a man. Using drugs and alcohol to escape these pressures is common. To unwind or feel more at ease with others, especially those who use, some men also use drugs or alcohol in social situations. Others may use drugs or alcohol to mask their true feelings in order to appear fine.
Unfortunately, substance and alcohol misuse can result in a lifetime of health issues, many of which are more prevalent in male users.
Don’t Let Drug Abuse Destroy Your Health
Many men turn to drugs or alcohol because of societal pressure and stigma, which may be very harmful to both their physical and emotional health. Thankfully, this stigma has lessened in recent years, making it simpler for men to obtain the assistance they require without worrying about being branded “weak” or “less of a man.”
The sickness of addiction spreads far, impacting not just the user but also those around them. Keep your health and the health of those around you from being destroyed by addiction. Contact a treatment provider for free right away to receive the assistance you need without any judgment.