A study found that sex addiction is more common than the thought that affects one tenth of men and one twelfth of women.
The accusations surrounding Harvey Weinstein and the rise of the I Movement also suggested that sex addiction has become an epidemic within society.
However, despite media coverage after high-profile sex scandals, there was no precise estimate of its prevalence.
Now, a new US study. UU. He suggests that while men have more trouble controlling their impulses, the gender gap is closing as more women also experience sex addiction.
This could be due to changes in sexual customs, sexual liberation and the rise of Internet pornography and applications such as Tinder that allow connection without compromise.
And those with a lower education, those with very high or very low incomes, and racial, ethnic and sexual minorities are more prone to it.
Dr. Janna Dickenson, of the University of Minnesota, in Minneapolis, explained: ?From Tiger Woods to Harvey Weinstein, news articles have conjectured that 'sex addiction' is a growing 'epidemic' that has not been recognized until now, while that the scientific community debates whether this problem even exists
?Although the psychiatrist has a long history of attempts to characterize hypersexuality, researchers and doctors have disparate opinions about whether it represents a true psychiatric disorder or if it is simply an indication of a broader sociocultural problem, labeled as out of control sexual behavior "
However, the way to define and label this also divides the experts, but a new recognized classification of compulsive sexual behavior disorder or CSBD was used.
Dr. Dickenson added: ?Specifically, CSBD is characterized by a persistent pattern of inability to control intense and repetitive sexual impulses, resulting in repetitive sexual behavior that causes marked distress or social deterioration.
"Such anguish and deficiency include neglecting social activities or personal health, trying repeatedly to control sexual behavior without success and continuing to participate in sexual behavior despite adverse consequences or even when the individual obtains minimal pleasure from their sexual activities" .
However, previous studies found that most were in denial and relatively few individuals perceive their sexual behavior as problematic.
The above estimates for the US UU. They suggested that the prevalence ranged from 1% to 6% in adults, with an expected male to female ratio of 2: 1 to 5: 1.
Then, the new study set out to obtain an accurate estimate of the prevalence of the CSBD by questioning 2,325 adults aged 18 and 50 who participated in the National Survey of Sexual Health and Behavior in November 2016.
Of these, 50.5% were women and the average age was 34 years.
The anguish and deterioration associated with the difficulty in controlling sexual feelings, impulses and behaviors were measured using the Inventory of compulsive sexual behavior.
A score of 35 or more on a scale of 0 to 65 indicated clinically relevant levels of distress and / or deterioration.
The study found that 8.6 percent of the nationally representative sample, 7 percent of women and 10.3 percent of men, supported the clinically relevant levels of distress and / or deterioration associated with the Difficulty controlling sexual feelings, impulses and behaviors.
Dr. Dickenson said the gender difference was much smaller than expected.
She said: ?The explanations that justify the hypothesis that CSBD can be much more common among men than women have been vague, although some researchers have pointed out differences in male sexuality with respect to intrinsic sexual motivation, ease of excitement and the most permissive attitudes towards chance. sex.
"Such explanations go into the socio-sexual culture that underlies the conceptualizations of the male ideology, in that male sexuality as" irrepressible, "and they suggest that when men have more access to sexual" exits, "they may be more likely to develop a compulsive sexual behavior.
?This contrasts with the feminine ideology that marks women as the sexuales sexual guardians?. of those expected to control sexual impulses and, therefore, will be less likely to develop compulsive sexual behavior.
?Given the recent cultural changes towards greater permissiveness of female sexual expression and the proliferation of access to sexual images and casual sex through the Internet, software applications and social networks, a possible explanation of the differences in The smallest gender found in our study is that the prevalence of difficulty controlling sexual behaviors among women may be increasing. ?
Dr. Dickenson concluded: ?The high prevalence of this sexual symptom is of great importance for public health as a sociocultural problem and indicates an important clinical problem that deserves the attention of health professionals.
?In addition, gender differences, sexual orientation, race / ethnicity and income suggest possible health disparities, point to the relevance of the CSBD sociocultural context and advocate a treatment approach that takes into account the health of minorities , the gender ideology and sociocultural norms and values. Sexual environment and gender.
"Health professionals should be aware of the large number of people who are distressed by their sexual behavior, carefully assess the nature of the problem and find appropriate treatments for both men and women."