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How Common Is A Compulsive Sexual Behavior Disorder Or Is It A Rare Disease?

Compulsive sexual behavior is a psychiatric condition marked by the inability of a person to manage his sexual behavior. He dwells on Persistent sexual thoughts that interfere with his ability to work, maintain relations with others, and finish their daily activities. It leads to excessive indulgences in sexual activities, sexual fantasies, urges, or behaviors. It includes masturbation, use of cybersex & pornography, and multiple sexual partners. It can affect both males and females. It often becomes difficult to control sexual behavior and can render harm or disruption to others. If it is left untreated, it may cause damage to one’s self-esteem, health, career, relationships, etc.

How Common Is A Compulsive Sexual Behavior Disorder, Or Is It A Rare Disease?

Compulsive sexual behavior is also known as sexual addiction, hypersexuality, or hypersexuality disorder. It may develop in any person even if he or she does not have sexual orientations irrespective of gender. It is marked by one’s excessive preoccupation with sexual urges or behaviors or fantasies out of his control. It causes distress and inversely affects one’s health, career, relationships, or other aspects of life.(1)

WHO defines CSBD or compulsive Sexual behavior disorder as an impulse control disorder, which means it appears in the ICD-11 alongside conditions like gambling disorder and kleptomania.

CSBD is marked by “a persistent pattern of failure to control intense, repetitive sexual impulses or urges resulting in repetitive sexual behavior,” according to its diagnostic description stated in the ICD-11 by WHO. It includes both the act of sex and sexual fantasies.(3)

According to the guidelines published by the American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors and Therapists (AASECT), sex addiction and porn addiction cannot be diagnosed as psychological disorders due to the absence of empirical evidence. A 2014 review states that 3–6% of people in the United States are reported to experience compulsive sexual behavior.(2)

Thus, compulsive sexual disorders are common disorders that are less noticed or recognized by the people. According to WHO, a large number of people have CSD, as many cases are diagnosed in ICD. It is not known as a rare disease. Many clinicians have observed an increase in its prevalence in their practices.(4)

Compulsive sexual behavior can affect both men and women. But it is more common in men. It can also appear in anyone, irrespective of sexual orientation. Following are the risk factors that may induce compulsive sexual behavior-

Easy Accessibility To Sexual Content- the rapid innovations in technology and social media have contributed to easy accessibility to images and information related to sex.

Privacy- Secrecy and confidentiality of compulsive sexual activities also worsen sexual problems.

Addiction To Alcohol Or Illicit Drug – these addictions may trigger compulsive sexual behaviors

Presence Of Other Mental Illness- mental illness such as a mood disorder (such as depression or anxiety), or a gambling addiction may induce this behavior.

Conflicts Or Problems In The Family Such As Addiction- stress in the relationships or addictive behaviors in the family may contribute to this behavior.

Personal History Of Physical Or Sexual Abuse- one who has faced physical or sexual abuse may develop this disorder.(1)


Compulsive Sexual behavior is a psychiatric problem characterized by uncontrollable sexual urges and desires that appears in patterns. The affected person develops an excessive interest in sexual fantasies, masturbation, multiple sexual partners, etc. It ultimately results in distress, negative impacts on self-confidence, health, relationships, and job. It affects males more than females. WHO classifies it as a common psychiatric problem affecting many people. Its cases have also increased in the clinics.


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Team PainAssist
Team PainAssist
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Team PainAssist, Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:January 20, 2020

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