Sex addiction psychologist

The notion that someone can have a “sex addiction” is debatable. However, many agree that individuals can struggle with self-control when dealing with sexual behaviors.

A lack of sexual self-control can cause problems in one’s functioning, career, and relationships. Some behaviors that may trigger issues include engaging in frequent prostitution, overusing pornography, having sexual affairs, and having sex with multiple partners. These behaviors become problematic when they interfere with your daily functioning, quality of life, and health. In addition, this loss of sexual self-control causes harm to yourself and your significant others.

Sexual self-control issues are complex mental health conditions resulting from an interaction of childhood experiences, relationship history, genetic influences, and one’s environment. Problems with sexual self-control are a result of distorted thinking, disturbing emotions, triggering events, and sexual desire. Genetic expression can also predispose you to seek reward-seeking stimuli and activate certain addiction-related neural networks. High levels of a hormone called oxytocin have been shown to exist in men with hypersexual disorder.

Your childhood experiences and social relationships may influence the development of sexual self-control issues. Lastly, co-occurring psychiatric conditions like depression, PTSD, and anxiety can contribute to addictive behaviors.

How do I know if have problems with sexual self-control?

You may already have an inclination that you are struggling with sexual self-control. To further assess if this may be a problem for you, ask yourself the following questions:

  • Are you consumed with engaging in multiple sexual activities?
  • Do you feel a loss of control of your sexual activities?
  • Do you often feel guilt and shame after sexual encounters?
  • Are you overly consumed with pornography?
  • Do you spend too much time finding multiple sexual partners?
  • Are you often disappointed after having a sexual encounter?
  • Do you feel consumed by thoughts of sex?
  • Have you lost important relationships?
  • Are you having financial problems due to your spending on sexual activities?

Therapy for Sexual Self-Control

Counseling with an addiction specialist is an effective treatment for sexual self-control issues. Psychotherapy involves facilitating insight into your need for sexual gratification, developing effective coping skills, implementing relapse prevention techniques, and making positive life changes.

Sexual Control Treatment components include:

Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT): CBT is a psychological therapy encompassing various techniques to facilitate positive changes in thinking, feeling, and behaving. With CBT, you learn to identify high-risk triggers and how to change your thinking and behavioral patterns so that you control and reduce sexual desires. Relapse prevention is an integral part of therapy that recognizes feelings, thoughts, and situations that trigger relapse.
Couple’s Counseling and Marital Therapy: Your sexual behaviors may have ruined or hurt important relationships. Your partner may have lost trust in your or harbors significant resentment and betrayal. Couples therapy can heal interpersonal relationships by improving understanding and communication.
Lifestyle Guidance: Eating nutritious foods, obtaining enough sleep, and exercising are just some activities that keep you healthy while you heal psychologically. Engaging in healthy pleasurable activities will help to improve your mood and make any feelings of withdrawal more tolerable.
Group Counseling or Support Groups: Talking with others who have gone through similar experiences can be helpful in your recovery. Group counseling and support groups allow you to interact with others who can relate to your situation. This cathartic group relationship is a safe space to share and obtain advice.

How do I start sexual self-control therapy?

Dr. Mazzei will first meet with you to understand your situation, and then together, you will develop a customized and confidential treatment plan. Her focus will be to foster a non-judgmental and supportive space to explore your issues and facilitate positive change and personal growth.

If you are interested in therapy, please contact our staff, who can answer any questions you have about addiction treatment and to schedule a confidential appointment with Dr. Mazzei.

How Dr. Mazzei Can Help You

If you are suffering from sexual control issues, or if you would like to talk to someone more about how Dr. Mazzei can help you, follow these simple steps:

  1. Text today at (480) 448-6755 or email us for a consultation
  2. Or, you can book directly online with Dr. Mazzei
  3. Begin your journey towards a fulfilling and healthier life

Dr. Mazzei offers in-person treatment in Chandler, AZ, and online therapy for Arizona, Illinois, Tennessee, and PSYPACT residents.