Any addiction, including sex addiction, can have severe negative consequences, influencing one's relationships as well as private and professional life. That is why it's imperative to ask for help with sex addiction as soon as the problem arises.
Often it is not easy to notice or acknowledge the signs of dependency, which can lead to more problems down the line. With sex addiction, there is an additional layer of shame sex addicts may feel related to how topics of sexual behaviors are treated in society.
However, anyone struggling with addiction can receive help. In this article, we will discuss in depth the signs of sex addiction and sex addiction withdrawal symptoms, so you can have a better understanding of what this disorder is and how it manifests itself.
This way, you'll know when it's time to react and address the issue.
Is Sex Addiction Real?
Still, we know that for many people, addictive behaviors regarding this sphere of life are the reality. How do we define sex addiction, then?
Sex addiction, also known as hypersexual disorder, is a condition characterized by compulsive and uncontrollable sexual behavior. People with sex addiction experience intense and persistent sexual urges, fantasies, and behaviors that can lead to significant distress and impairment in their daily lives.
They may engage in risky sexual behaviors, such as unprotected sex, or have multiple sexual partners, which can lead to emotional and physical consequences. Sex addiction can also co-occur with other mental health conditions, such as substance abuse or anxiety disorders.
While it is not recognized as an official diagnosis in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5), the signs and symptoms of sex addiction are real, and it's a debilitating condition that can negatively impact a person's personal and professional relationships, as well as their overall quality of life.
Considering that, we also need to remember that people engage in a variety of different sexual behaviors. Having multiple partners or having sex frequently does not automatically indicate there is a problem.
It's the compulsivity aspect, as well as considerable negative consequences for one's life, that may point to sex addiction. What are some of the symptoms of sex addiction?
Sex Addiction Symptoms
Like many other forms of dependency, sex addiction can be a symptom of a larger problem that manifests itself as compulsive sexual behavior.
It's worth remembering that sex addiction can only be diagnosed by a specialist, like a doctor, sex therapist, or mental health professional.
Sex Addiction Withdrawal Symptoms
Sex addiction withdrawal symptoms can come in the form of emotional, mental, and physical symptoms.
The list of sex addiction withdrawal symptoms includes:
The withdrawal phase for people recovering from sex addiction can last for a month or even longer. Every situation is different, and a lot depends on what kind of support system a person struggling has and how well they can understand and manage their triggers.
Sex addiction is not easy to face, and it also may be difficult to understand for people (family and friends) who never had to struggle with it. That is why, if your loved one is a sex addict, it might be valuable to seek professional advice on how to help them and yourself through this experience.
Is a Sex Addiction Similar To Other Addictions?
Some addiction recovery tools, like individual and group therapy, that are often implemented with other types of addictions can be present as an element of sex addiction treatment.
How Common Is Sexual Addiction?
Although it's hard to know the exact numbers, it is estimated that hypersexual disorder may affect anywhere from 3% to 10% of the US. population (source). It is more prevalent in men (3.9% to 30%) than in women (2.1–25%).
There is also a correlation between sex addiction and other disorders. Around 80% of people who suffer from hypersexuality have a history of various mental health disorders, including:
Adverse Consequences of Sex Addiction
Often, people suffering from addiction will struggle with:
Where To Seek Help?
One of the most effective methods of healing from an addiction is individual therapy, during which you can understand the core problems that led to the development of a disorder. By working with a mental health and sex health professional, you will be able to learn how to recognize and manage your triggers and how to take care of yourself to mitigate the chance of relapse.
Group therapy can be a valuable resource for understanding that you're not alone and that there are other people who face the same struggle.
The Miracles Asia Rehab in Thailand is a good place to start your recovery.
At Miracles Asia, you will be able to benefit from a variety of tools like individual and group therapy, psychoeducation classes, consultations with a psychiatrist, and relapse prevention and aftercare, so you can heal and build solid fundaments for when you leave us.
And we are located on a beautiful island - Phuket, where you can immerse yourself in the local culture and relax while resting on breathtaking beaches far away from the noise.