Drug and alcohol helpline
Sexual Addiction

Sexual Addiction

Sexual addiction drink and drugs advice line

Sexual addiction

Sexual addiction, also known as hyper-sexuality or compulsive sexual behaviour, is a condition characterised by an excessive and uncontrollable preoccupation with sexual thoughts, urges, or behaviours. It is considered a behavioural addiction and can have significant negative impacts on a person’s life and relationships. Here are some key points about sexual addiction:

  1. Definition: Sexual addiction is characterised by an intense and ongoing focus on sexual thoughts, fantasies, or behaviours that often interferes with daily functioning and causes distress. Individuals with sexual addiction may engage in excessive pornography consumption, masturbation, multiple sexual partners, or other compulsive sexual behaviours.

  2. Symptoms: Symptoms of sexual addiction may include a persistent inability to control sexual urges, an excessive amount of time spent on sexual activities, neglect of personal or professional responsibilities due to sexual preoccupation, feelings of shame, guilt, or despair related to sexual behaviours, and an inability to maintain healthy relationships due to compulsive sexual behaviours.

  3. Causes: The exact causes of sexual addiction are not well understood and can be complex. Biological, psychological, and social factors may contribute to the development of the disorder. Traumatic experiences, underlying mental health conditions, and certain personality traits may also play a role in the development of sexual addiction.

  4. Treatment: Treatment for sexual addiction typically involves a combination of therapies and support. Cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT) is commonly used to address distorted thinking patterns and develop healthier coping mechanisms. Group therapy and support groups can provide a safe space for individuals to share their experiences and gain support from others facing similar challenges. In some cases, medication may be prescribed to address underlying mental health conditions, such as depression or anxiety, that may co-occur with sexual addiction.

  5. Support and Education: Education about sexual addiction is important for individuals struggling with the condition and their loved ones. Support from friends, family, and support groups can provide understanding, encouragement, and accountability during the recovery process.

  6. Relapse Prevention: Like other addiction disorders, sexual addiction is a chronic condition that requires ongoing management and relapse prevention strategies. Developing healthy coping mechanisms, identifying triggers, and creating a support network are important for long-term recovery.

  7. Professional Help: If you suspect that you or someone you know may be struggling with sexual addiction, it is important to seek professional help from a qualified mental health professional who specialises in addiction and sexual health. They can assess the situation, provide a diagnosis if appropriate, and develop an individualised treatment plan.

It’s important to note that healthy sexual behaviour and a high sex drive do not necessarily indicate sexual addiction. Sexual addiction is diagnosed when the behaviour becomes excessive, uncontrollable, and interferes with daily life. Seeking help and support from professionals who specialise in sexual addiction can be beneficial in understanding and addressing the condition.

Call us now