Pratisandhi

We Need To Talk More About Sex Therapy!

With the increase in awareness about mental health, lots of intimate and stereotypically taboo conversations are now coming into the limelight. At the end of such a year, lets talk about some sex positive changes we would like to see in the upcoming year- sexual therapy

bbc.co.uk

What is Sex Therapy?

Sex therapy is basically a form of psychotherapy which includes talking and counsellling about the patient’s sexual issues with a certified professional. In no way does sex therapy includes any form of physical contact with the therapist! It helps an individual or their partner(s) address their emotional, physical or interpersonal issues regarding their sexual health. It can be done solo or with one’s partner(s). This brings us to an important aspect, how common are sexual problems?

illustrationX

What are sexual health concerns?

Sex therapy aims at addressing the sexual health concerns a person faces. Women’s sexual health issues are often related to menstrual cycles, sex, infection, birth control methods, aging, medicines, or changes after pregnancy. Men’s sexual health issues can range from erection problems to sexually transmitted infections to genital injuries.

According to a health study done by Cleveland Clinic Sexual Dysfunction & Disorders: Treatment, Symptoms & Diagnosis, almost 43 percent of women and 31 percent of men experience sexual issues in their personal lives.

 To understand sex therapy we need to understand some clinical terms first:

  1.  Sexual dysfunction is a problem that prevents an individual from experiencing optimum satisfaction during sex. It can be in the form of lack of desire to have sex, problems to feel aroused or delay and even lack of orgasms. Even pain during sex is a type of sexual dysfunction. These dysfunctions can be felt during any time of the sexual response cycle.
  2. Sexual response cycle consists of an excitement phase, a plateau phase, followed by orgasm and then resolution. However sexual dysfunctions prevent a person from feeling any of these phases or feeling them not in that specific order.
Everyday health

How does a Sex Therapist help?

A Sex Therapist primarily helps by-

  1. Listening to the patient’s sexual history
  2. Considering and analyzing how that history affects the patient now
  3. Offering help through exercises, talk therapy and guidance
Ted Ed

Why is sex therapy so uncommon ?

People are already wary of the term “sex”. In addition to this comes the shame of seeking “therapy”. People are often hesitant to seek out someone or even talk about their sexual health in front of their partners or even their most trusted friend. This wall is very hard to overcome when it comes to talking about it in front of a complete stranger.

 Moreover there is a lack of certified professionals who are capable of handling such an issue. For example, we have no such board of certification for sexual health professionals in India. The most a person can talk to is their OBN or gynaecologist. More often medical professionals themselves are filled with biases which further prevent people from opening up. Such a shame associated with seeking help prevents a person from enjoying an activity which they are supposed to derive pleasure from.

The most someone can do in such an aspect is find a couple’s counselor or someone in the neurology or urology field who has had experience in mental health fields. A common problem dealt with in sex therapy is sexual trauma. A lot of people, having had traumatic experiences with sex, are unable to derive pleasure or associate sex with anything good. They become scared of the act itself which can lead to further mental health issues like depression and a lack of self worth. Seeking counsel with a professional can help someone gain a stable footing again when it comes to sex.

Conclusion

For a country like India, where sex is still a taboo, it is very hard to seek out sex therapy. This is one of the aspects which should be more discussed in the upcoming year. The government, besides setting up mental health clinics should focus on the holistic development of an individual’s quality of life. This includes setting up a sex therapist in every mental health clinic.

Some general features about Sex Therapy-

  1. Sex therapy will include talking about each and everything beginning from childhood to past relationships, even the sexual    aspect.
  2. At any point should one feel uncomfortable with their therapist, they should switch as sex therapy to be fruitful, one has to be extremely vulnerable with a complete stranger. 
  3. Sex therapy might also include medications if the issue is more physical and mental.

There is nothing that cannot be treated with care and time and hence sex therapy is certainly a way forward for future medical health professionals. 

Cover Graphics: Metro

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We Need To Talk More About Sex Therapy!

With the increase in awareness about mental health, lots of intimate and stereotypically taboo conversations are now coming into the limelight. At the end of such a year, lets talk about some sex positive changes we would like to see in the upcoming year- sexual therapy.

bbc.co.uk

What is Sex Therapy?

Sex therapy is basically a form of psychotherapy which includes talking and counsellling about the patient’s sexual issues with a certified professional. In no way does sex therapy includes any form of physical contact with the therapist! It helps an individual or their partner(s) address their emotional, physical or interpersonal issues regarding their sexual health. It can be done solo or with one’s partner(s). This brings us to an important aspect, how common are sexual problems?

illustrationX

What are sexual health concerns?

 Sex therapy aims at addressing the sexual health concerns a person faces. Women’s sexual health issues are often related to menstrual cycles, sex, infection, birth control methods, aging, medicines, or changes after pregnancy. Men’s sexual health issues can range from erection problems to sexually transmitted infections to genital injuries.

According to a health study done by Cleveland Clinic Sexual Dysfunction & Disorders: Treatment, Symptoms & Diagnosis, almost 43 percent of women and 31 percent of men experience sexual issues in their personal lives.

 To understand sex therapy we need to understand some clinical terms first:

  1.  Sexual dysfunction is a problem that prevents an individual from experiencing optimum satisfaction during sex. It can be in the form of lack of desire to have sex, problems to feel aroused or delay and even lack of orgasms. Even pain during sex is a type of sexual dysfunction. These dysfunctions can be felt during any time of the sexual response cycle.
  2. Sexual response cycle consists of an excitement phase, a plateau phase, followed by orgasm and then resolution. However sexual dysfunctions prevent a person from feeling any of these phases or feeling them not in that specific order.
Everyday Health

How does a Sex Therapist help?

A Sex Therapist primarily helps by-

  1. Listening to the patient’s sexual history
  2. Considering and analyzing how that history affects the patient now
  3. Offering help through exercises, talk therapy and guidance
Ted Ed

Why is sex therapy so uncommon ?

People are already wary of the term “sex”. In addition to this comes the shame of seeking “therapy”. People are often hesitant to seek out someone or even talk about their sexual health in front of their partners or even their most trusted friend. This wall is very hard to overcome when it comes to talking about it in front of a complete stranger.

 Moreover there is a lack of certified professionals who are capable of handling such an issue. For example, we have no such board of certification for sexual health professionals in India. The most a person can talk to is their OBN or gynaecologist. More often medical professionals themselves are filled with biases which further prevent people from opening up. Such a shame associated with seeking help prevents a person from enjoying an activity which they are supposed to derive pleasure from.

The most someone can do in such an aspect is find a couple’s counselor or someone in the neurology or urology field who has had experience in mental health fields. A common problem dealt with in sex therapy is sexual trauma. A lot of people, having had traumatic experiences with sex, are unable to derive pleasure or associate sex with anything good. They become scared of the act itself which can lead to further mental health issues like depression and a lack of self worth. Seeking counsel with a professional can help someone gain a stable footing again when it comes to sex.

Conclusion

For a country like India, where sex is still a taboo, it is very hard to seek out sex therapy. This is one of the aspects which should be more discussed in the upcoming year. The government, besides setting up mental health clinics should focus on the holistic development of an individual’s quality of life. This includes setting up a sex therapist in every mental health clinic.

Some general features about Sex Therapy-

  1. Sex therapy will include talking about each and everything beginning from childhood to past relationships, even the sexual    aspect.
  2. At any point should one feel uncomfortable with their therapist, they should switch as sex therapy to be fruitful, one has to be extremely vulnerable with a complete stranger. 
  3. Sex therapy might also include medications if the issue is more physical and mental.

There is nothing that cannot be treated with care and time and hence sex therapy is certainly a way forward for future medical health professionals. 

Author

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

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