Restorations Therapy Blog

What Does Sex Addiction Look Like?

by on Sunday, November 8th, 2020

Sex Addiction

Despite popular belief, sex addiction is a lot more common than society would have you believe. According to a publication in the Current Pharmaceutical Design journal in 2014, which provided the most recent statistics available, 3-6% of the population struggles with sexually-related concerns. Despite these numbers, sex addiction is widely taboo and often misunderstood. Here is a glimpse of what sex addiction is and how it affects people’s lives. 

What Is Sex Addiction?

Sex addiction can be defined as a type of intimacy disorder that is “characterized by compulsive sexual thoughts and acts.” More specifically, the National Council on Sexual Addiction and Compulsivity defines it as “engaging in persistent and escalating patterns of sexual behavior acted out despite increasing negative consequences to self and others.” It is progressive, often becoming more severe over time. Minor behaviors often initiate addiction, including constant masturbation or obsessively using sex services such as porn, computer sex, and telephone sex. For some individuals, the addiction does become more severe, causing them to partake in illegal activities. These can include exhibitionism, molestation, rape, vulgar phone calls, and voyeurism. 

Symptoms of Sex Addiction

Sex addiction symptoms present themselves both emotionally and physically. Oftentimes, sex addiction results in feelings of guilt, shame, depression, isolation, or humiliation, as well as a failure to set healthy boundaries. Many sex addicts have a strong fear of abandonment, causing them to stay in toxic relationships. On their own, they may feel incomplete or as if they are empty. Physical symptoms include being unable to perform daily functions and responsibilities due to their sexual obsessions. Other symptoms include:

  • Chronic thoughts about sex that become obsessive
  • Lying to hide sexual behaviors
  • An inability to stop the thoughts or behaviors
  • Putting yourself or others in danger because of the behavior
  • Compulsive sex with multiple people
  • Feeling guilty about sex

Effects of Sex Addiction

There are multiple effects of sex addiction, mainly depending on the severity of the addiction. It often causes strain and tension within romantic relationships due to a fear of infidelity, not being able to meet your partner’s obsessive appetite, and more. It can also cause a strain in everyday life as the person is frequently unable to think of anything other than sex. This can cause problems with their job, family, relationships, and even get them into legal trouble. 

At Restorations Therapy, we understand the impact that sex addiction can have on a person’s life, particularly their romantic relationships. This is why we have created a specialized program to help our clients heal. Our caring and understanding staff is here to help guide you through the necessary steps to take control of your life again. You don’t have to live in feelings of shame forever; there is treatment available for you. We offer a variety of options that can help make a difference, including couples’ therapy, group therapy, and individual therapy to help you address sex addiction and any other mental health concerns you may have, including past traumas that may be contributing to your addiction. Sex addiction doesn’t have to dictate how you live your life. Call us today at (720) 446-6585 to learn more about the personalized treatment programs we offer at Restorations Therapy. 

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