Dealing With Pornography Addiction

Addiction to pornography – especially on the Internet – is a growing problem that has attracted more and more media attention in recent times. In this article an English therapist addresses this issue.

Addiction to pornography is a growing problem, one that is receiving growing attention in the media. This is a problem that is bringing more and more people to our therapy clinics here in the UK.

The internet puts pornography at our fingertips. With a click of the mouse anyone can access all means of porn.

What happens when viewing online pornography increases and gets out of control? At what point does it become addictive?

How can porn addicts access the help they need?

Porn addiction is not yet recognized by the American Psychological Association as a mental disorder (as are many addictions), but this does not mean that the problem doesn’t exist.

The criteria for identifying porn addiction are very similar to those of other addictions. Does reading, watching, thinking about, and / or viewing pornography interfere with a person’s work, personal life, relationships, social interactions or family life? If this question is answered affirmatively, then the person may have an addiction to pornography.

What are some problems that make porn addiction more problematic than they have been in the past?


It’s easier than ever to view pornography. Prior to the availability of Internet pornography, people had to physically enter ‘adult’ video stores, or buy magazines from stores. Now, with just a quick search of the Internet, anyone can gain access to a practically unlimited range of free pornography in the privacy of their own home.

Early Exposure

A recent study reported that 42% of children had been exposed to pornography on the Internet before the age of 18. Whereas in the past access to pornography will be more difficult, with Internet children having a greater chance of being exposed to it from an early age.


Some experts believe that tolerance to pornography is constructed in the same way as alcohol and other substances. The more porn the addict consumes, the more they need to get the same level of satisfaction. The internet offers an unlimited supply of content with approximately 420 million pornographic websites available.

How can porn addicts access the help they need?

As porn addiction grows, so does our understanding of it. With better understanding comes better ways of treating problems.

The first step to recovery lies in ending denial and acknowledging that there is a problem and that the person is addicted. Once this is accomplished, there are several helpful and effective ways to treat porn addiction.

Many 12 Step programs – both online and offline – offer help with this particular addiction. Sex Addicts Anonymous and Sex and Love Addicts Anonymous are two of the most popular. A person can also seek individual therapy and counseling, and hypnotherapy can be of great help in managing this addiction. Working with a professional who has experience in this area, addicts can learn to control their addiction and return to a freer way of life.

If someone you care about is addicted to pornography, or you think you might be yourself, one of these therapeutic interventions can prove helpful in overcoming it.

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