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Why Cocaine Addiction in Women is Higher than that of Men

Addiction can be described as a neurological disorder that incapacitates a patient. A person will gravitate toward excessive levels of drug usage, place drug-seeking over other pursuits, and oscillate between abstinences and relapses. This problem can happen to anyone regardless of the age, level of socialization, religion, or type of personality.

It is possible that gender differences play a key role in the rapid development of drug addiction. Contrary to what men believe, studies have shown women to be much more vulnerable to becoming addicted to drugs. This is especially true of cocaine. Because cocaine can boost energy and alertness in women, they use it widely to accomplish work while staying awake. It’s also an effective way of escaping from problems with your mental or emotional health, discover more.

The majority of research done on addiction and related areas was conducted by males. Early scientists and clinics were reluctant to include women as subjects because their belief was that hormones would make it difficult for them to obtain conclusive research results. Because of the above reasons, women’s participation in the study is not encouraged because they believe that their hormonal cycle will make it difficult to reach conclusive results.

This is something of a novelty. But it’s led to better medicines, enhanced intervention strategies, and increased understanding about how addiction advances in both men and females. In recent years, the study of addiction has evolved.

Here’s a study which highlights one of these key reasons. This detailed sex study of cocaine use by women, published in Nature Communications journal, provides a comprehensive breakdown.

Sexual activity and addiction among women

Erin Calipari led the Mount Sinai Hospital team that conducted the research. The researchers found hormonal fluctuations to be the reason why women abuse cocaine faster and in greater quantities than men. In addition, the study highlights that women will start using cocaine more often and earlier than their male counterparts. Finally, this study shows women to be more difficult than men in their attempts to abstain from cocaine.

They used mice in order to compare the way men and females express their cocaine use. These mice, whose dopamine responses and pathways are comparable to humans’, were examined at every stage of their reproductive cycle.

Researchers have found that the cycle of a mouse’s menstruation can affect cocaine consumption in a big way. They tend to behave like males when the levels of hormones in female mice is low. When the levels of estrogen in mice is high, female mice experience a greater reward from cocaine.

Not only did the cocaine-induced dopamine release in female mice show that it was altered, but these effects also persisted longer than they would have in male brains. It was also discovered that environmental factors play a role in male and woman mice. The researchers noted that the female mice tend to be more attracted by places near cocaine. This isn’t so true for male mice.