Updated on May 17, 2024
3 min read

Statistics on Sex Addiction or Hypersexuality

Sex addiction, also known as compulsive sexual behavior disorder (CSBD) or hypersexuality, is a complex and often misunderstood condition that affects millions.

Despite the ongoing debate within the medical community regarding its classification, recent studies have provided valuable insights into the prevalence, demographic trends, treatment outcomes, and long-term recovery associated with this disorder. Even if it’s not formally recognized in major diagnostic manuals, sex addiction and compulsive sexual behavior can be as damaging as any other addiction.

In this article, we will explore the latest statistics on sex addiction, highlighting the most significant findings and their implications for those grappling with this challenging condition.

Notable Statistics on Sex Addiction

Prevalence and Demographic Trends

  • Between 3% and 6% of the general adult population in the United States suffers from sex addiction, according to smaller studies cited due to the lack of large national studies
  • The percentage of Americans addicted to sex has risen from 3% in the 1990s to 6.4% in 2022, translating to about 21 million Americans
  • Research from the University of Minnesota indicates that 10.3% of American men and 7.0% of American women experience distress and/or impairment from difficulty controlling their sexual urges and behavior
  • Approximately 6% to 8% of U.S. adults could be classified as addicted to sex, which could amount to up to 24 million people
  • A study found that 94.7% of those diagnosed with hypersexuality were men, and only 5.3% were women

Treatment Effectiveness and Recovery

  • The average time in recovery from sex addiction was reported to be 3.4 years, with a range from 2 months to 14 years
  • Among the studied group, 38% had less than 2 years in recovery, 28% had at least 2 but less than 5 years, and 34% had at least 5 years of recovery
  • 51% of sex addicts reported having relapsed, indicating that recovery can be a challenging process with a risk of relapse
  • A combination of pharmacotherapy and psychotherapy is considered the optimal management strategy for sex addiction, with pharmacological agents showing a positive response rate of 50-90%
  • 79% of sex addicts identified themselves as "in recovery" or attending any kind of 12-step program
Recovery DurationPercentage of Sex Addicts
Less than 2 years38%
2 to 5 years28%
5 years or more34%
Sex Addiction chart

Comorbidities and Environmental Factors

  • Sex addiction often co-occurs with other mental health disorders and addictions, such as depression, anxiety, mood disorders, impulse control disorders, OCD, ADHD, personality disorders, eating disorders, compulsive spending, drug addiction, and uncontrollable gambling
  • Environmental factors and a history of abuse, especially sexual abuse, can increase a person's vulnerability to sex addiction
  • The environment, including aspects of U.S. society that use sex in advertising, and the availability of pornography, contribute to the prevalence of sex addiction
  • 54% of sex addiction patients begin experiencing related behaviors before age 18, but most addicts do not seek professional help until around age 37

Long-term Recovery and Support

  • Only 27% of men and 28% of women considered their sexual relationship to be very good or excellent before identification of sex addiction. In recovery, 39% of men and women rated their sexual relationship as very good or excellent.
  • Only 5% of sex addicts report having recovered from the addiction after going into rehab, with 72% relapsing within the first 6 months of joining.
  • A study published in the journal Sexual Addiction & Compulsivity revealed that 9% of sex addicts had been through an inpatient program, 79% of married people reported attending meetings for sex addicts, and 91% had seen or were seeing a professional counselor or therapist.

The Path to Recovery

Recovering from sex addiction is a complex process with a significant risk of relapse. Treatment options for sex addiction encompass therapy, group therapy, and support groups or 12-step programs.

The optimal management strategy is considered to be a combination of pharmacotherapy and psychotherapy, with pharmacological agents demonstrating a positive response rate of 50-90%.

It’s important to acknowledge that different factors, including the presence of other addictions, personal and societal factors, and personal dedication to change, influence recovery from sex addiction.

Moreover, the effectiveness of treatment for sex addiction is challenging to measure accurately due to the lack of clear diagnostic criteria and the absence of sex addiction or compulsive sexual behavior in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5). The medical community's recognition of the condition and the ongoing debate regarding its classification further complicates the establishment of standardized treatment outcomes.

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Updated on May 17, 2024
7 sources cited
Updated on May 17, 2024
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  2. BedBible. (n.d.). Sex Addiction Statistics: 100+ Facts and Findings. Retrieved from https://bedbible.com/sex-addiction-statistics/
  3. CBS News. (2019, July 10). Sexual addiction treatment clinics often take advantage, experts say. Retrieved from https://www.cbsnews.com/news/sexual-addiction-treatment-clinics-often-take-advantage/
  4. Kraus, S. W., Voon, V., & Potenza, M. N. . Should compulsive sexual behavior be considered an addiction?. Addiction, 111, 2097-2106. https://doi.org/10.1111/add.13297
  5. Mayo Clinic Health System. (2019, February 12). Does society have a sex addiction problem?. Retrieved from https://www.mayoclinichealthsystem.org/hometown-health/speaking-of-health/does-society-have-a-sex-addiction-problem
  6. Oxbow Academy. (n.d.). Sex Addiction, Intimacy and Recovery. Retrieved from https://oxbowacademy.net/educationalarticles/cpl_sex_add_recov/
  7. Sexual Alpha. (n.d.). Sexual Addiction Statistics. Retrieved from https://sexualalpha.com/sexual-addictions-statistics/

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