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PARAPHILIA: ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW

WHAT IS A PARAPHILIA?


You might be wondering why you have intense sexually arousing fantasies occurring frequently for at least 180 days, you might just be suffering paraphilia.

Paraphilia is a medical condition that brings about frequent, intense, sexually arousing fantasies or behaviors that involve non-living objects, children or non-consenting adults, or suffering or humiliation of oneself or the partner. It is called a paraphilic disorder when it causes distress or causes problem functioning in the sufferer or that harm or may harm another person. 

Danny Staeey, St. Louis community college says, she went about a list of paraphilias recently and found a list of what she would loosely call a sex life previously. “They were describing me, everything makes me horny”, she blurts. 

A good number of people suffer from paraphilia, it might only look like an ineffable sexual drive that always ends up in embarrassments, awkwardness, depression, maybe guilt too. They are almost exclusively diagnosed in men. Many sufferers have more than one paraphilic disorder.

characteristics of paraphilia

TYPES OF PARAPHILIA

According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM-5) of mental disorders, there are several different types of paraphilic disorders based on the sufferer’s sexual interest. 

VOYEURISM: A paraphilic disorder where the sufferer obtains sexual gratification from observing something sordid like watching others nude, disrobing, or non-consenting stripping. 

voyeurism

EXHIBITIONISM: Literally a pervasion in which the sufferer obtains sexual excitement from exposure of one’s own genitals to an unsuspecting person. 

FROTTEURISM: In this case, the sufferer non-consentingly rubs or touches a person in a bid to attain sexual gratification. 

SEXUAL MASOCHISM/ SADISM: The sufferer attains sexual excitement from being subjected to physical humiliation or pain by one’s self or another person. He or she is pleasure-driven by sexual domination or abuse, like in BDSM movies. This type of paraphilia is 20 times more common in women than men

PEDOPHILIA: Pedophilia might not be very new to us, as we should be conversant with pedophilic cases. The sufferer here is pleasure-driven by engaging in sexual activities with children usually below age thirteen. 
Mask Wesner, an extensive reader in this field adds that “A person may simply be content to fantasize about children, or maybe driven to actually molest or rape children, with terrible effects”.

FETISHISM: The sufferer sexually fascinates with non-living objects or highly specific body parts. This includes sexual arousal by an unconscious person, known as Somnophilia, and deriving pleasure from seeing or thinking about urinating, a condition called Urophilia. 

TRANVETISM: Cross-dressing in sexually arousing ways that interfere with functioning. 

CHREMATISTOPHILIA: A paraphilia whereby arousal is reported to be obtained from being robbed. 

ACOUSTICOPHILIA:  A type of paraphilia related specifically to sounds such as moaning during sex.

In my latest researches, Giovanni Dominick, Miami says, “for most of my life, I have been sexually aroused by the sound of chainsaws, I feel like am the only one in the world who gets horny listening to a chainsaw”.

Be informed that there are other types of paraphilia. 

paraphilia

CAUSES OF PARAPHILIA

The cause of paraphilia is unclear but it can be traced to some differences in brain activity during sexual arousal. Mental health professionals have found that male pedophiles have a lower IQ on psychological testing compared to men who are not pedophiles. 

Several theories exist regarding the cause of paraphilia. The Psychoanalysts theorize that a sufferer is reverting or repeating a sexual habit that arose early in life such as temperament, uncontrolled emotions or behaviors, trouble in managing sexual urges and being open about them, repeated traumas in persons abused sexually (such as children), and disrupted development sexuality. 

Behaviorists suggest that this disorder begins through a process of conditioning by a repeated association of nonsexual objects in pleasurable sexual activities, eventually making these objects sexually arousing.

WHAT ARE THE EFFECTS OF PARAPHILIA?

The effects of paraphilia can be very depressing to the sufferer, as the victim most times have hard times relating symptoms to anyone, either for fear of being judged or they really do not know how to relate to such issues. Discussing symptoms of paraphilia is certainly not a too comfortable conversation especially on the end of sufferers. 

Advertence or awareness of paraphilia should be encouraged, as this condition could not just have a depressing and hectic effect on the sufferer, but also tends to impose serious threats on the public.

This could cause a likely increase in the rate of pedophilic acts, rape, and other sexual offenses. 

WHAT ARE THE AVAILABLE TREATMENT OPTIONS?

psychotherapy - paraphilic patient

It is important to note that paraphilia can be managed. Usually, therapies or treatments yield better results if the sufferer’s mind consents positively. Available treatment options are:

  • Group therapy– this approach is designed to help sufferer break through the denial they so commonly exhibit by surrounding them with other patients who share their condition. Once these persons begin to admit they have a sexual divergence, the therapist can then begin to address individual problems that may have led to the sexual disorder.
  • Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT)– it involves applying behavioral therapy methods to modify sexual deviations by altering  sufferer’s distorted thinking patterns and making them cognizant of the irrational justifications that lead to their undesirable sexual behaviors.
  • Individual expressive-supportive psychotherapy– it requires a psychologically minded patient who is willing to focus on the paraphilia. 
  • Pharmacotherapy– medications be used to used to suppress sexual behaviors such is the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) and anti-androgens (to suppress production of the male sex hormone, testosterone).

Surgical intervention can also be done but this approach is rare.

SUMMARY

Consequently, research has shown that paraphilia is more common in males, the reason for this is not yet understood but is assumed to be a result of greater male fragility and sensitivity to prenatal environments. Cognizance must be given to males especially at adolescence because most times adolescents are left to sort the changes they undergo at puberty themselves. Hormones are ravaging adolescence, they should be encouraged to talk about how they feel, because this is a crucial stage of development for them, with the so much brain activity and development their body is currently undergoing.

Paraphilia could be controlled.

DIBIE IFEAKACHUKWU AUGUSTA, a guest writer.

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