The LGBTQIA community reports more cases of substance abuse and addiction. This can be the result of a number of factors, including stressful relationships with family members, past trauma, and stigma from the social environment. Many individuals in the LGBTQIA community don’t seek help for addiction, as they feel their options can be limited. Learn more about the risk of substance abuse for members of this community and options for treatment near you.
The LGBTQIA Community and Addiction Risk
A person’s mental health is easily affected when their physical, mental, social, and spiritual needs aren’t met. When they feel unwanted and discriminated for being different, chances are high for self-medication, which can eventually lead to addiction. Some of the LGBTQIA community addiction risks include:
- Severe sadness, loneliness, and depression
- Intense thoughts of suicide or self-harm
- Stress and generalized anxiety
- Poor physical health due to lack of self-care
- Possible chronic health conditions such as cancer
As much as addiction can be prevented, doing so doesn’t often feel like an easy task. The causes of addiction can be hard to control when social factors interfere, which can affect your confidence to face life without drugs or alcohol.
Some factors that can contribute to substance abuse include:
Many people experience trauma during childhood. At this point, you might be learning more about your sexual identity. At some point, you may have come out to your parents or relatives and received a negative reaction. Emotional trauma can begin during these stages when your family may engage in physical and emotional abuse.
Such memories can develop, as emotional trauma experienced as a child continues into adulthood. From there, symptoms of addiction can result.
Society can be cruel and can be discriminatory to people who behave differently. Discrimination can occur within the family, at school, in public places, and at work. Discrimination can come in the form of disrespect or actions that ignore a person’s human rights.
Not having many friends or simply having enough friends but no one to talk to can cause feelings of loneliness. Having limited social outlets can make it challenging for anyone to share their problems and difficulties.
While the power of sharing is a benefit to most people, loneliness can deprive others of experiencing these advantages. This poses risks for mental health issues such as anxiety and depression. And eventually, these mental conditions may lead to self-medication and addiction.
Masking of Identity
It’s stressful when you go out to school or work and pretend to act like someone you’re not. For LGBTQIA youths who haven’t come out yet, every day can seem a stressful day. The pressure of secrecy and having to mask their own sexual identity due to potential discrimination can increase anxiety and depression. This can lead to other choices for solace and short-term escape, which commonly can mean substance abuse.
A Place to Heal for the LGBTQIA Community
There are many causes of addiction in the LGBTQIA community. However, the most common cause for concern among most LGBTQIA youths is their fear of seeking treatment. Due to the fear of discrimination existing in medical professionals, they neglect the need for addiction treatment.
This is why it’s important for these individuals to seek treatment at a rehab center that understands the challenges the LGBTQIA community faces. There are treatment services you can benefit from to battle addiction without the fear of discrimination. These treatments include:
- Trauma therapy program
- Drug detox treatment
- Partial hospitalization program
- Residential addiction treatment
Recovery is Possible at TruHealing Centers
There’s always help available. At TruHealing Centers, we are committed to providing compassionate care to every individual. Addiction is the enemy, so your recovery should be the top priority. Contact TruHealing Centers at 833.631.0525 and start putting an end to addiction.