Addiction is a brain disorder characterized by compulsive engagement in rewarding stimuli despite adverse consequences. In most cases, addiction is linked to substance abuse of drugs like cocaine, heroin and marijuana, alcohol, and cigarettes.
Nearly everyone between the ages of 17-40 has an active sex life. We start having sexual urges and arousals right from childhood, but as we grow older, these urges grow stronger.
the national council on sexual addiction and compulsion has defined sexual addiction as engaging in a persistent and escalating pattern of sexual behavior acted out despite increasing negative consequence of sex and others.
sexual addiction is the incessant urge to have sexual intercourse very frequently and the progressive intimacy disorder characterized by sexual thoughts and acts. It is a highly dangerous and destructive condition that affects a person’s mental health. For some sexual addicts, behavior does not progress beyond masturbation or the extensive use of pornography.
Roughly 55 percent of convicted sex offenders are sex addicts. Not all sexual addicts necessarily become sexual offenders, addiction can involve child molestation, rape, voyeurism, and obscene phone calls.
signs and symptoms associated with being a sex addict are somewhat similar irrespective of age or sex. Some general behaviors associated with sexual addiction include:
- Compulsive masturbation
- Prolonged use of pornography
- Recurrent intense sexual fantasies
- Engaging in sexual intercourse with more partners than intended
- Engaging in sexual behavior despite the health risk
- Multiple unsuccessful attempts to limit sexual activity
Causes of sexual addiction
Increasing sexual provocation in our society has spawned an increase in the number of individuals engaging in a variety of unusual or illicit sexual practices. Some causes of sexual addiction include:
- Compulsive fixation on an unattainable partner
- Addiction to pornography
- A high level of testosterone or estrogen can affect the libido
- Anxiety, depression, and poor impulse control can cause sexual addiction
- Social isolation increases one’s likelihood of seeking inappropriate ways to be sexually gratified
EFFECTS OF SEXUAL ADDICTION
- Decreased concentration and productivity at work
- Increase in likelihood of having sexual injuries such as torn vagina and fractured penis
- Most sexual addicts are liable to having sexually transmitted diseases
- The decline in personal relationship and divorce
- It can also cause substance abuse like alcohol and hard drugs like marijuana and cocaine
GET HELP FOR SEXUAL ADDICTION
Sex addiction just like other psychological disorders like anxiety and depression can be treated, but you will need to speak with a mental health professional that will help to address factors that are influencing your sexual addiction. Several therapies have been set up by health professional to help battle sexual addiction, some of them include:
- GROUP THERAPY
Group therapy helps individuals develop communication skills and socialization skill to help them learn how to express their sexual issues, it also helps to develop self-awareness by listening to others with similar issues. Depending on the individual needs, group therapy lasts for 6-20 weeks.
- PSYCHODYNAMIC THERAPY
Psychodynamic psychotherapy or psychoanalytic psychotherapy is a form of depth psychology; the primary focus is to reveal the content of a client’s psyche to alleviate psychic tension. Psychodynamic therapists help clients find a pattern in their emotions, thought, and beliefs to gain insight into their current selves.
- INDIVIDUAL THERAPY
Individual therapy is a one on one type of therapy in which a trained professional (therapist) works through personal issues. Individual therapy comprises many different treatments, including psychoanalysis and cognitive behavioral therapy. Individual therapy enables the client’s thoughts, feelings, habits, and experience to be explored by a professional to gain a better understanding of themselves.
- COGNITIVE BEHAVIOURAL THERAPY
Cognitive-behavioral therapy is based on the concept that your thoughts, feelings, actions, and physical sensations are interconnected. It is a short-term goal-oriented psychotherapy treatment that takes a hands-on practical approach to problem-solving. There are multiple options for doing CBT without a therapist, including self-help books and internet-based treatment.
- MARRIAGE COUNSELLING OR COUPLES COUNSELLING
This is very beneficial for people who are in a relationship where one or both partners are sexual addicts. Couples counseling adopts emotionally focused therapy to address issues between couples.
Research shows that therapy may result in fewer relapses of common conditions including moderate depression and anxiety. According to the American psychological association, emotionally focused therapy is now at a 75 percent success rate.
38percent of men and 4 percent of women with sexual addiction have sexually transmitted diseases as a result of their behavior and 70 percent of women with sex addiction reported they had experienced at least one unwanted pregnancy.