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Pornography Addiction Signs and Symptoms

Pornography addiction, or compulsive use of pornography, is excessive pornography use that interferes with daily life. There is no diagnosis of pornography addiction in the current Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM IV), and as with the broader diagnosis of sex addiction, there is debate as to whether or not the behaviors intrinsic to pornography addiction actually constitute a behavioral addiction.

Pornography Addiction
Pornography Addiction

People from all walks of life have problems with compulsive use or overuse of pornography.  They either cannot get enough pornography or they are not able to let go of it. Despite the fact that porn addiction has not yet been qualified as a true addiction, as it creates unmanageability in real life much the same as drugs of addiction and other behavioral addictions, it is treated as a legitimate addictive disorder by addiction treatment centers worldwide.  There is little debate in the modern behavioral health treatment field that individuals who abuse pornography display legitimate symptoms of addiction and require treatment for recovery.

Symptoms of Porn Addiction

There are several symptoms that you will notice when a person becomes addicted to pornography. The addicted person will not be able to stop the behavior even though they want to or when there are other priorities. He or she will continue to engage in pornography even when they know it is not healthy for them. There are also “missing” symptoms, or symptoms usually associated with addictions in general that are absent from the profile of porn addiction. It is these “missing symptoms” that have made it difficult to classify this disorder as a full-blown addiction. These all-important missing symptoms include tolerance and withdrawal.

Porn Addiction is Behavioral

Pornography addiction is a psychological addiction. With drug abuse, there is a physical substance that alters the user’s mental state to which the user develops tolerance, meaning they need to use more and more over time to achieve the same effect. With porn addiction, the person experiences a sexual “release” or euphoric response. The addict does not experience withdrawal when removing the pornography from the person’s life. For people addicted to porn, it goes beyond normal physical highs. These individuals will not need their spouse, and the pornography will take up time. The time that they would otherwise spend on priorities like spending time with the family, work, or other leisure activities.

Fact: 40 million US adults regularly visit internet pornography websites.

Ease of Access

Modern advertising seems to revolve around looking sexy and body image. Almost everywhere you go, you will find some item or product that could be considered pornographic. The many sexual products advertised on television and the internet may increase porn ography addiction. The online marketplace for pornography is vast. As long as you are of a certain age and have money to spend, you can get about anything pornographic online that you would like by turning on your computer and accessing the millions of websites that are available. There are also many free websites that you can use to download pornographic movies and pictures. This has been a significant drawback for the parents, because it is effortless to get the obscene material, no matter how old you are. Parents need to make sure they set up the computer their kids use with unique features or special programs that allow them to lock out specific content. Teenagers can very well become porn addicted as much as adults can because of their raging hormones.

Fact: One out of three visitors to view porn websites is a woman.


The general public needs to be aware that pornography addiction is a real addiction even though it has not been classified as such yet. This addiction does not have to be harmful but most of the time it will consume the lives of people who are fighting it. In rare cases, it can also affect other lives as well because it could turn into abuse. Sometimes, an addict will be so consumed by this addiction, that they feel they have to have the real thing. If they are watching a pornographic flick that has non-conventional bedtime activities on the screen, these people may want to imitate these occurrences with a loved one or sometimes even a stranger. These are rare instances when it comes to pornography addiction, but they can happen. These individuals will turn from having a slight addiction to pornography to being put into jail because of a criminal act.

Treatment for Pornography Addiction

Like all other addictions, there is a treatment for pornography addiction. Many websites exist to help people who have a problem with staying away from pornography. These sites include forums where an addicted person can talk to people anonymously about their issue. The person who has the pornography addiction is also encouraged to seek out a therapist or a psychologist to help them treat their addiction. This is a process that needs to be discreet because you need to make sure the therapist or psychologist you choose, does not have a problem with this type of addiction. If the therapist or psychologist is offended or has a compelling philosophy about the subject, he or she would not be able to give the right help to the patient.

Seeking Treatment

The first step that you should take when you have a pornography addiction is to admit that you have a problem. When a person can acknowledge that they have a problem and that it is affecting a big part of their life, they can begin to work on learning why they may have the problem. This will help them to learn to fix it and get their life back. This is an addiction that can turn a person’s world upside down. It can isolate them from their friends and family as well as detach them from their true feelings about love. The next process to involve your self with if you have a pornography addiction is maintenance. You will find there are many self-help groups as well as rehab centers for this type of addiction. “Out of sight, Out of mind” is the primary key to conquering this addiction. The internet needs to be obsolete as well as movies, magazines, or anything else that could be of a pornographic nature. A person needs to heal themselves and understand what their addiction is so that they can stand up on their own two feet and look away from any temptations that may arise in the future.