When surveying populations based on gender in those ages 12 and older, it was observed that males had a higher substance dependence rate than females. However, the difference in the rates aren't apparent until after age 17.[43] The Drug and Alcohol Dependence reports that older adults abuse drugs and alcohol at a rate of 15-20%. It's estimated that 52 million Americans beyond 12 years old have abused a substance.[44]

Some people are more vulnerable to drug addiction than others, just as some people are more vulnerable to cancer or diabetes than others. There is no single factor that controls whether you will become addicted. Overall, though, the more risk factors you have, the greater your chance of drug addiction is; on the other hand, the more protective factors you have the less risk of addiction you face.
Support groups provide people with understanding peers and ongoing support, in church basements, community centers, and public facilities scattered all across the country. Here, people can come together to discuss addiction’s difficulties, and they can meet with other addicted people to gain support and insight. Alumni groups are similar, in that they link peers together to discuss addiction, but these groups contain people who all worked within the same facility for help.

Getting alcohol out of the addicted person’s system is the first part of recovery. People with a severe alcohol addiction can experience intense withdrawal symptoms. A supervised alcohol detox is usually necessary for people addicted to alcohol to prevent potentially fatal complications. Shaking, sweating, seizures, and hallucinations are possible alcohol withdrawal symptoms. Woman Turns to Rehab After Struggling With Drugs, Alcohol: Part 1