Women and Alcohol Use Disorders: Factors That Lead to Harm

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Abstract

Women, alcohol, and alcohol use disorders are underresearched topics when compared with the plethora of literature exploring male alcohol consumption and its related harms. It is time to change the fact that women are underrepresented in research and programs targeting alcohol use disorders. Given the changing patterns of alcohol consumption by women, coupled with the fact that women experience a telescoping effect in alcohol-related harms, it is time that increasing attention be paid to the way gender influences the experience of alcohol-related harms, including the development of alcohol use disorders. Recovery-orientated systems are not possible without the voices of the consumers being heard. With this in mind, the purposes of this article are to explore factors that lead to alcohol-related harm in women and to highlight the gender-specific barriers to service engagement.

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