Trapped in lust: nymphomania and how to treat it

Mar 12, 2019

What do you see when you imagine a nymphomaniac? Men usually imagine them to be a hot beauty ready to experiment in bed, having no taboos in regard to sex. In reality though, a relationship with a nymphomaniac is far from romantic, yet alone loving. All her thoughts are focused on only one thing: fulfilling her sexual needs and desires.

Let’s see what nymphomania actually is: a disorder or a “mild deviation”? Can we treat nymphomania?

Blessing or punishment: nymphomania as it is

People have known about nymphomania for a very long time. Thanks to Plato, people started calling it “uterine frenzy”. According to him, the female uterus is a beast roaming within a female body desperate to realize its main function: childbirth. Surprisingly, there are still people who think that “uterine frenzy” exists and manifests itself through a woman’s increased sexual activity and high libido. However, this is simply not true. Modern medicine does not acknowledge this interpretation.

Nymphomania is a pathologic hypersexuality in women characterized by an excessive sexual desire. This disease is also called andromania and metromania.

It’s very important to understand that nymphomania is not just lax and uncontrolled sexual behavior aimed at boosting self-esteem. Increased sexual desire is a disease officially acknowledged by modern medicine and included in ICD-10 (International Classification of Diseases) in class F52.7 [1].

According to Patrick Carnes, a scientist and a psychologist, around 3% of women suffer from sex addiction. [2]

People didn’t talk about it much before, as our society considers uncontrolled sexual behavior to be immoral. Nowadays though many scientists work on diagnosing and treating nymphomania.

Signs of nymphomania: recognizing the problem

Increased sexual appetite is different from nymphomania. It is not about the frequency of intercourse, even 5 acts per night can be considered normal. The difference lies in the perception of sex. A healthy person can keep their desires under control and pick their partners carefully. A nymphomaniac does not display this level of control. She is obsessed with sex, it becomes her fixation and the crux of life. She is constantly under control of her obsessive desire to achieve sexual pleasure.

There are several signs and symptoms of nymphomania. So, what does a “regular” nymphomaniac look like?

  • She doesn’t care where and with whom she has sex. Only “when” is important, and it is “now”.
  • Her mind is full of erotic fantasies.
  • She often watches porn and masturbates uncontrollably.
  • She may treat her increased sexual appetite as a divine gift and a blessing. Nymphomaniacs often feel that they are special.
  • She cares little about her partner’s feelings and desires. Only  intercourse matters to relieve her craving.
  • She is often emotional and irritable. In more severe cases women may even resort to aggression if they don’t get what they want from their partner.

Causes of nymphomania

The causes of nymphomania are still understudied. For centuries scientists proposed various explanations, starting from Plato’s “uterine frenzy” up to the opinion of Victorian doctors, who stated that nymphomania is directly linked to cranial shape. Serious research debunked a lot of the myths surrounding this disorder.

Modern medicine distinguishes two types of causes, physical and psychological.

Physical causes of nymphomania include various disorders that have increased sexual appetite as some of the symptoms. Those can include head injuries and brain tumors affecting the hypothalamus – a region in the brain responsible for sexual desire. Other causes of the disorder include the following: [3]

  • hormonal changes (for example, menopause);
  • mental disorders (schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, psychopathy, hysteria with hypertemic manifestations);
  • certain infections (neurosyphilis, mycoplasmosis);
  • ovary diseases.

Behavior psychology treats pathologic hypersexuality as a learned behavior pattern. It can appear after experiencing sexual or domestic abuse, strong stress and/or personal insecurities. [3] It has been established that 60% of people with sex addiction have experienced sexual abuse in their childhood. [4]

Bipolar disorder and psychosis accompanied by lust can be other causes of nymphomania.

Multiple faces of nymphomania

Patients with andromania are generally put in two groups depending on their age. [3]

Nymphomania in young women

Young women with andromania generally do not consider themselves sick. Rather, they think that their sexual appetite is an asset. A woman is likely to consult a doctor only when her sexual needs start to interfere with other spheres of her life.

However, there are also more violent and explicit cases of this disorder. Nymphomania in a young woman can often be accompanied by rapid personal degradation, if she does not consult a doctor in time.

Increased sexual desire can be noticed during adolescence. The nymphomaniacs who have recognized their disease admitted that they started getting obsessive thoughts about sex as early as 8-12 years old. Those were not scenes from a movie, but vague imaginings of actual intimacy between a man and a woman. Even such thoughts can bring pleasure to young girls. A patient born with this problem often starts her sexual activity early. Later it may lead to the constant changing of partners in pursuit of a new sexual experience. However, as such women lack knowledge about safe sex, they are at a high risk of early pregnancy and catching sexually transmitted diseases. [3]

Young women who haven’t treated their nymphomania for years can develop menopausal nymphomania.

Menopausal nymphomania

Normally, after menopause the sexual appetite of women goes down. However, if it goes up instead, there is a high probability of menopausal nymphomania.

This is usually caused by a severe hormonal imbalance within the woman’s body. In certain cases, nymphomania at this period can be a sign of a mental disorder.

Patients suffer heavily from menopausal nymphomania and they often display common signs of this disorder. Women report experiencing debilitating sexual desire day and night. Pathologic hypersexuality can be accompanied by itching in the external genitalia.

Menopausal nymphomania can go untreated until old age. In the majority of cases this pathology can lead to excessive masturbation or perversions (mainly zoophilia and tribadism). The husbands of such nymphomaniacs often have low sexual desire and cannot fulfill the needs of their wives.

Treat or enjoy?

Nymphomania is a disease, and a disease needs be treated.

It is almost impossible to build a happy family with the condition of pathologic hypersexuality. Even though many men dream of having a relationship with a passionate nymphomaniac, only few could withstand 24/7 “sex marathons”. Men would also have to deal with multiple acts of infidelity from their partner, because nymphomaniacs can rarely control themselves.

A nymphomaniac is unlikely to achieve success in terms of career advancement. She has different goals and little time for a social life. All her thought processes are focused on finding new partners. A woman with this problem can find it hard to conform to a society that looks down upon the frequent change of partners.

In certain cases a nymphomaniac with sexual frustration can develop severe depression and suicidal behavior patterns.

An additional reason why a person should start treatment immediately is that uncontrolled sexual behavior leads to an increased risk of STD.

Conflicts between newlyweds

Many psychologists agree that newlywed couples have a harder time solving conflicts compared to others. Partners who have lived together for only 1-3 years file for a divorce due to unresolved conflicts much more often than more experienced couples.

Up to 30% of new marriages fall apart due to this. [1]

Here are the most common causes of conflicts in new families:

  • jealousy and cheating;
  • any flaws and negative qualities that the other partner cannot accept;
  • lack of a proper house and financial resources to support a family;
  • expectations of childbirth;
  • lack of emotional attachment and mutual respect. [3]

If both spouses are ready for a meaningful conversation, they can solve any conflicts which appear in their married life.

Which kind of doctor can diagnose nymphomania?

There can be a fine line between having a high libido and “true” pathological hypersexuality. It is important to establish whether a patient requires serious treatment. A sexologist can help with that. The first stage is an in-person conversation. After an open talk and gathering medical history, a specialist can establish if a patient displays the signs of nymphomania and requires serious treatment.

Remote testing can be more convenient, as it can provide a preliminary diagnosis with a high level of precision.

There are several criteria for establishing the problem:

  • Long duration of obsessive behavior (more than 6 months). Signs are either constant or appear periodically.
  • Sexual desire is not the result of hallucinations, delirium or impaired judgment.
  • Arousal does not appear simply as the result of alcohol or the intake of a psychotropic agent.
  • The patient’s behavior is detrimental to her existing relationship with a committed partner, her work and social life.
  • The patient is unable to control her behavior. She may understand that her actions are wrong, but she cannot stop herself.

After diagnosing the issue, the doctor conducts several tests to establish the causes of the condition. It is important to exclude brain and ovary tumors, hormonal imbalance and brain infections. The administered tests include MRI and CT, blood tests, including hormone panel test and consultations with gynecologist and endocrinologist.

Modern methods of treating nymphomania

The treatment of nymphomania depends on its causes. Various doctors may be involved in the process of treatment, including gynecologists, oncologists, endocrinologists, sexologists, psychologists and psychiatrists.

Here are several effective methods of treating nymphomania.

Medical treatment

If the disease is caused by a hormonal imbalance, a doctor may administer hormonal therapy. A patient is constantly supervised by the doctor and undergoes tests regularly. If nymphomania is caused by a severe mental disorder, a psychiatrist may administer neuroleptics, tranquillizers and/or antidepressants. In these cases, treatment is accompanied by individual psychotherapy.

Medical treatment can prove effective if the diagnosis was correct and the woman follows all the prescriptions. In such a case, the signs of nymphomania fade or disappear completely.

Surgery

The most severe cause of pathologic hypersexuality is a brain tumor. Depending on the situation, doctors will prescribe a suitable treatment method and evaluate whether the tumor is fit for surgery.

Psychological treatment

Hypnotherapy

Hypnotherapy may be used to treat andromania. Here a person is put into trance, which helps the specialist to figure out which life events and experiences may have caused the obsessive state. This way a psychotherapist can create a treatment schedule to eliminate the primary causes.

Therapy

Therapy is aimed at developing a critical approach in a patient to her “deviant” behavior, teach her new ways of living and how to experience joy from sources other than sex. Consultations with a psychologist usually happen in-person. Such therapy can often take several years to have an effect. Group sessions can also be applied to treat this condition.

7Spsy behavior modification technique

7Spsy behavior modification technique is a new method based on behavior psychology. It is a registered and scientifically approved method, which lasts 2-6 weeks. This course encourages you to change your pathologic mode of behavior to a healthier pattern. As a result you have less sexual tension, you learn to enjoy life and build healthy relationships without constant cheating.

The change in behavior pattern is the very reason that the result becomes fixed and mastered. This helps you to return your libido level to normal, become more calm and get rid of depression and constant stress. That is what our 7Spsy behavior modification technique does.

 

Information from this website cannot be used for self-therapy and self-diagnostics. 

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nymphomania and how to treat it