Document Type : Research articles


Department of Psychology, Shahid Bahonar University of Kerman, Kerman, Iran


Background: Substance abuse in women is a major public health problem, and despite the efforts to help women quit permanently, great numbers still end up in relapse.
Objectives: The present study aimed to investigate the barriers to quitting addiction in Iranian women.
Methods: In this descriptive qualitative research conducted in a university-affiliated hospital, Kerman, Iran, during 2016 - 2017, participants were selected using criterion sampling. The researchers interviewed 20 women with the mean age of 29.85 years (SD = 6.50), who were visiting two rehabilitation camps in the city of Kerman to quit the addiction. Transcripts were analyzed to find themes, which represented the shared consensus of the participants. The utilization of the qualitative analysis software MAXQDA 12 helped analyze and manage data of the study.
Results: The participants of the study reported that easy access to drugs, keeping in touch with drug users, the stability of atti- tudes, lack of/insufficient social support, coercive treatment, and neglecting Narcotic Anonymous (NA) meetings were barriers to the process of quitting addiction permanently and escalating relapse.
Conclusions: In order to facilitate the process of quitting addiction in women, access to drugs as well as keeping in touch with drug users must be restricted. Moreover, they should be encouraged to take part in educational and support programs, whose aim is to change the attitude of substance users and to motivate them to quit the addiction.