WHO Adds Sexual Addiction as a Diagnosis

Sex addiction

The World Health Organization recently classified sexual addiction as a mental disorder for the first time. The new new International Classification of Diseases (ICD) will add “compulsive sexual health disorder,” defined as “a persistent pattern of failure to control intense, repetitive sexual impulses or urges resulting in repetitive sexual behavior."

It may be difficult to distinguish promiscuity and/or sexual predation with sexual addiction. One useful way to distinguish between the two groups is whether the person has a genuine desire to stop their behavior but is unable to do so. This can be difficult to evaluate if the desire to stop is claimed only after the behavior the exposed.

Other ways to diagnose sexual addiction include feelings of shame and guilt (which nonetheless does not stop the behavior), engaging in risky sexual behavior (such as anonymous sex, sex with prostitutes, and sex without protection), and progressively worsening consequences (such as losing loved ones, missing work, and contracting sexual transmitted diseases).