What Is Compulsive Sexual Behavior?

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  • Written By: Christina Edwards
  • Edited By: W. Everett
  • Last Modified Date: 20 October 2018
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A certain amount of sexual expression is considered normal, but compulsive sexual behavior isa problem for some people. This behavior is often thought to be obsessive and uncontrollable, and it will often impact many areas of a person's life. Some compulsive sexual behavior can affect a person's relationships and general health, for example. Mental health providers may be able to help an person overcome a problem of this nature.

Sexuality and intimacy are normal parts of a healthy adult's life. Most adults will participate in some sexual acts throughout the course of their life. These acts usually take place with a significant other during private moments.

When sexual expression becomes compulsive or obsessive, it is often considered compulsive sexual behavior. Some experts may also refer to this behavior as hypersexuality. This behavior is also very impulsive for most individuals. They may find it very difficult or impossible to stop what they are doing, even though it is impacting their lives negatively.

Intimate relationships will often be affected when a person is suffering from compulsive sexual behavior. A person may find that his sexual partner can not fulfill his desires. He may then either feel unsatisfied and unhappy. He may also begin to look outside of the relationship for fulfillment.

A person's mental health may also suffer when he is dealing with compulsive sexual behavior. He may feel guilt or shame because of what he is doing, for instance. Although he knows it is abnormal or wrong, he will usually be unable to stop his behavior. This will often lead to worse feelings of shame and possibly depression.

Some compulsive sexual behaviors may also lead to legal problems. For example, if a man feels a compulsive need to employ a prostitute to fulfill his sexual desires, he may be arrested. This will often lead to a loss of freedom along with fines. Exhibitionists, who feel the need to expose themselves to strangers, will also often be arrested.

Health problems and diseases may also be the result of some compulsive sexual behavior. Promiscuous people generally have multiple sexual partners. If the proper precautions aren't taken, those people are at risk of contracting a dangerous sexually transmitted disease, like AIDS.

Therapy is often the recommended treatment for compulsive sexual behavior. Cognitive behavior therapy may help people find a way to deal with their sexual obsessions. Family therapy may also be helpful if a person's family life was impacted by his compulsive sexual behavior.

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