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According to Web MD, the therapeutic approaches used to treat impulse control disorders and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) are often applied to the treatment of sex addiction.
An individual with sex addiction typically spends hours planning for sex or engaging in sexual activity, at the expense of jobs, family activities, or social interactions.Because of the social stigma involved with sex addiction, many individuals with this disorder are reluctant to admit their need for help, or to seek help in ways that might jeopardize them socially or personally.However, sex addiction can be treated if the individual is willing to accept professional help.An article published in indicates that people with sex addiction often have a dual diagnosis, or a co-occurring disorder, that goes hand in hand with their hypersexual behavior.One study revealed the following statistics about sexual addiction: Sexual dysfunction, impulse control disorders, and personality disorders were also associated with higher than average rates of sex addiction.According to , Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, or CBT, is especially effective at helping clients confront the self-defeating, delusional thoughts that are typical of sex addiction.
With CBT, clients are taught to identify their behavioral triggers and to develop new coping strategies for managing these situations or emotions in positive ways.
A sexual encounter can trigger the release of dopamine, a brain chemical that generates feelings of elation, happiness, or contentment.
These positive sensations encourage the individual to pursue sexual gratification again, ensuring that reproduction will occur and the species will continue.
Individuals with an addiction to sex will go to extremes to satisfy their cravings or live out their fantasies, regardless of the consequences to themselves or others.
The American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy estimates that sex addiction affects approximately 12 million adults in the US.
Substance abuse, in particular, is very common in individuals with sex addiction.