Sexual addiction, also called hypersexual disorder, may be defined and identified as any compulsive or impulsive sexual activity that falls into one of three categories: shameful, secretive, or abusive. Internet sexual addiction is a relatively new form of sexual addiction and is one of the most prevalent.
About Sexual Addiction
An addiction to sex is similar to an addiction to gambling in that all process addictions (problems that are behavior-based rather than substance-based) have a biological and neurochemical core. Sexual addiction also resembles chemical dependency in that sex and love addiction are behavioral disorders often passed along in families, however their treatment requirements are unique.
Addiction and Sex
Sexual addiction is often accompanied by other addictions, both chemical and behavioral. Clinical understanding of this fact is important since sexual addiction contributes significantly to the HIV-AIDS epidemic and because efforts to control sexual addiction are often confounded by coexistent problems.
What is Sexual Addiction?
Symptoms of sexual addiction follow predictable patterns. You’ll find everything from research to case studies in sexual addiction articles. The easiest way to recognize the signs of sexual addiction is to take a sexual addiction test online.
Overcoming Sexual Addiction
A spouse or partner coping with sexual addiction in his or her partner is often desperate to find out how to stop it. If a spouse, partner or the sex addict needs specific information about how to get over a sexual addiction, the Internet provides an excellent way to access information confidentially.
The 12-step program of Alcoholics Anonymous have been adapted for use in programs for eating disorders, compulsive gambling, sexual addiction and other addictions. Treatment programs for sexual addiction are geared toward addicted individuals, couples, and spouses or partners of sex addicts.
Getting Help for Sexual Addiction
Facilities that do not provide sex addiction help directly may refer patients to a sexual addiction treatment center if sexual issues are detected during treatment for chemical dependency for example.
In cases where sexual addiction has led to exceptionally serious problems — such as when an unfaithful person has exposed the partner to HIV infection, or when sexual misconduct has occurred that could result in legal charges, loss of professional license, or financial adversity for the family — sexual and love addiction rehabilitation centers can provide a certified sexual addiction therapist who has the training necessary to assist clients in navigating these uniquely difficult situations. Certified Sex Addiction Therapists (CSATs) have extensive, long-term training and supervision experience in the management of sexual addiction cases.
Sexual addiction counselors face challenges different from those of other addiction specialists. Unlike the goal in treatment of chemical dependency, which is abstinence from use of all psychoactive substances, the therapeutic goal in sexual addiction is abstinence only from compulsive sexual behavior with a coexisting goal, that of adapting and integrating healthy sexuality.