Who Becomes Addicted to Sex?

Category : Sex Addiction Information

Who Becomes Addicted to Sex?Sex addiction is a behavioral addiction that distresses addicts as well as their loved ones. It is characterized by excessive thoughts or compulsions to engage in sexual activities that are maladaptive and harmful. While not everyone who has sex becomes addicted, many risk factors contribute to addiction. Get help as soon as possible to begin treating this crippling issue.

Biological Risk Factors for Sex Addiction

Gender and genetics are the strongest biological risk factors for sex addiction. Dr. Patrick Carnes, an expert in sex addiction, reports that nearly 80 percent of sex addicts who seek treatment are male. This may indicate that men are highly predisposed to this addiction, but it may also indicate that various factors keep women from either recognizing or treating their conditions. A family’s genetics also affect the development of sex addiction. People who grew up in a household with an addict may struggle with addiction later in life, largely due to genetics and certain environmental factors.

Environmental Risk Factors for Sex Addiction

Environmental risk factors for developing a sex addiction include family behavior and peer pressure. People often learn how to cope with problems by watching their family members deal with problems. For instance, if a child grows up in a household of sex addicts, they may learn that sex is a way to cope with negative emotions. Additionally, peer pressure plays a large role in the development of sex addiction. When people feel pressured to participate in sexual activities, they may do so repeatedly and become hooked on the act and resulting social advantages. Many teenagers and young adults believe that sexual activity gains the admiration of others, and when they receive positive feedback afterward, the action is reinforced and may create an addiction.

Signs of Sex Addiction

Only some people who engage in sexual activity become addicts, so people must learn to recognize when sexual activity becomes problematic. Most people have healthy, controlled sex lives that are not of concern, but the following signs indicate when normal sexual behaviors lead to addiction:

  • Mental preoccupation with sexual thoughts
  • A need for more intense sexual behavior
  • Neglecting social or occupational responsibilities to act on sexual impulses
  • Continued engagement in sexual behaviors despite physical or psychological problems
  • Feelings of guilt after engaging in sexual behaviors
  • Engaging in sexual behaviors that can cause physical or emotional distress to others

These symptoms often damage not only the sex addict, but also those who may be targeted by the behaviors. The effects of a sex addiction can interfere with relationships with both family and friends. Some people feel incapable of controlling their sexual needs, at which time they need help.

Sex Addiction Help

If you or a loved one suffers from sex addiction, then please call our toll-free helpline today. Our admissions coordinators are available 24 hours a day to answer any questions you have about treatment for sex addiction, so reach out now for professional, confidential support.