September 21, 2023

Sex addiction therapy teaches individuals to control their sexual thoughts, behaviors and urges. Just like other positive life-affirming activities, such as eating or exercising, sex can become addictive when it becomes a compulsive behavior and begins to take priority over other important needs, responsibilities, or values. In addition to identifying and working through the underlying causes, sex addiction therapy also helps people develop effective coping strategies to manage triggers.

Treatment programs typically combine psychotherapy with medication, depending on the person’s specific symptoms and needs. Mood stabilizers, such as Lamictal and Tegretol, are frequently prescribed to help control mood swings and can be used to decrease compulsive sexual urges. Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), which were developed to treat depression and anxiety disorders, may be prescribed off-label to treat the impulsivity associated with sex addiction.

During individual therapy sessions, sex addicts meet with a licensed mental health professional who has the specialized training to address their sexually compulsive behavior and any co-occurring mental illnesses. Many of these people have experienced some form of trauma and use sex as a way to cope with pain or stress. This is why trauma therapies, such as somatic experiencing and EMDR are often used to help clients through the recovery process.

Group therapy, which involves patients sharing their experiences and struggles with others who are going through the same thing, is also an option for some people. Support groups are usually led by a trained professional and can be helpful to people with sex addictions, as they can offer a space to share feelings in an environment that is safe and free from triggers.

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