An estimated 3 to 6% of U.S. adults suffer from sex addiction. Sex addiction is a process addiction characterized by persistent and escalating sexual thoughts and behaviors that negatively impact a person’s life. In most cases, people addicted to sex form little or no attachment to sexual partners. They never attain genuine intimacy.
Sexual addiction involves persistent and escalating sexual thoughts and behaviors that negatively impact a person’s life. Most sex addicts form no attachment to their sexual partners and struggle to form intimate relationships.
There are several sex addiction symptoms that suggest you may need treatment. If you notice any of these sex addiction warning signs and symptoms, seek out treatment at a facility like The Ranch.
Sex addiction is sometimes referred to as hypersexuality, sexual dependency and compulsive sexual behavior. Sex addiction symptoms can impact your ability to work, maintain relationships and carry out day-to-day activities. When you suffer from sex addiction, your sexual behavior feels out of control.
The causes of sexual addiction are unclear. But, like with many addictions, mental health issues may be an underlying cause. Sex addiction may be a way of coping with the emotional pain of trauma, for example.
Sex addiction includes an obsession with sex. Persistent sexual thoughts can affect other activities, interactions and relationships. If a person’s sexual urges become uncontrollable, then they may struggle to function in social situations.
As with all addictions, sex addiction symptoms can worsen without treatment. Common treatment options for sex addiction include therapy, counseling, and support groups. By addressing the underlying reasons for sex addiction symptoms and learning coping skills, you can begin the road to recovery.
It can be difficult to identify sex addiction since people have naturally differing sex drives. One common mistake is to think that a high sex drive is a sex addiction symptom, but that isn’t necessarily true. A high sex drive can be perfectly healthy and not put a strain on someone’s life. Sex addiction is different. Sex addiction symptoms are much more extreme than a high sex drive.
The World Health Organization (WHO) recognizes sex addiction. It notes the following symptoms for compulsive sexual behavior disorder:
People with sex addiction may not just be addicted to sex itself. They may be addicted to other types of sexual behavior as well. This is one reason why sex addiction can be hard to spot and define.
There are many behaviors that may be a sign of sex addiction. These include:
It’s not just particular activities that point to sex addiction. There are many aspects of behavior that can be sex addiction symptoms as well. These include:
Sex addiction signs can also lead to other complications, such as:
Left untreated, sex addiction can spiral out of control, which can lead to extremely negative consequences. The condition can cause chaos in people’s lives. At The Ranch, we have well-trained staff that understands the needs of people addicted to sex. Here’s how treatment for sex addiction works at our facility.
Sex addiction can be just as serious as drug abuse. Situations that fuel substance abuse often also fuel symptoms of sex addiction. Some of these similarities include:
Sex addiction signs often include withdrawal when you go without compulsively sexual behaviors. Like drug addiction withdrawal, these may include psychiatric symptoms such as:
Research shows sex addicts who stop their compulsive behavior may have cravings for certain foods and cigarettes. Researchers believe this is due to an imbalance of feel-good brain chemicals. Like drug addiction, compulsive sexual behaviors may cause the brain to overproduce feel-good chemicals. Your brain can begin to depend on addictive behaviors to make these chemicals. During recovery, sex withdrawal symptoms may occur as the brain tries to restore balance.
Addiction is a disease of the brain. It changes the brain and affects behavior. One study had people with sex addictions view sexually explicit content. Researchers found the same brain areas are active in sex addicts as substance abusers when they view drug stimuli. People with different types of compulsions may have similar brain activity.
People who abuse drugs and alcohol often have mental illness. This is called co-occurring disorders. They use substances to help ease the symptoms of mental health conditions like depression and anxiety. People with sex addiction often also have co-occurring disorders. They take part in compulsive sexual acts for similar reasons.
A telltale sign of addiction is continuing it despite negative consequences. Addiction can hijack your brain and make you do things you wouldn’t normally do. For the drug addict, life centers on substances. For the sex addict, life centers on compulsive sexual behaviors. Like people with substance abuse, sex addicts compromise work, family and personal lives. You can see how sex addiction is ruining your life, but feel helpless to stop.
The mental health professionals at The Ranch will start by evaluating your physical and emotional health. We’ll also assess whether you’re struggling with any co-occurring disorders. Sex addiction can be as serious as drug abuse and many people with sex addiction have other addictive behaviors. Some people with sex addiction experience obsessive-compulsive disorder or post-traumatic stress disorder. When sex addicts are also substance abusers, we can treat both sex addiction and drug addiction at The Ranch.
Sexual health is also an important aspect of treatment. Some sex addicts have direct sexual contact and are exposed to sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), such as HIV, chlamydia and genital warts. Treatment options for sexual addiction at The Ranch will include medical support as well as education about sexually transmitted diseases.
At The Ranch, we provide a range of treatments that can help you overcome your sex addiction. This includes:
Our compassionate therapists can lead you through the darkest days of addiction to a new chance for healing. When you choose The Ranch sex addiction treatment program, you choose the road to healing. Call The Ranch treatment center today at 844-876-7680.