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Sex Therapy is the therapeutic treatment of sexual difficulties that an individual or couple may have. This means that an individual or couple sits down with a therapist and talks about the sexual problem, and the therapist assists in determining the source of the issue and how best to treat it. This is done through work in the sex therapy sessions, by talking about and understanding the issue, as well as tasks given to do at home.

What are some sexual difficulties one can have?

  • Erectile Dysfunction | Experiencing difficulty to achieve or maintain an erection
  • Premature Ejaculation | Ejaculating too quickly
  • Delayed Ejaculation | Taking too long to ejaculate
  • Orgasmic Disorder | Inability to achieve orgasm
  • Hypoactive Sexual Desire Disorder |  Lack of interest in sex
  • Hypersexuality |  Excessive sexual urges
  • Vaginismus | Vaginal muscle tightness, making penetration difficult or impossible and causes pain
  • Dyspareunia | Painful sex for women
  • Performance Anxiety | Anxiety caused out of fear of not performing well in sex
  • Fear of Anal Sex | Wanting to have and enjoy anal sex but experiencing fear
  • Non Consummation | Sexual intercourse in a committed intimate relationship has not taken place causing distress to one or both persons

Sexual dysfunction has been proved to be affecting about 45.7% of women and 33.4% of men. Such issues, and others, have different prevalence, meaning that some are more common than others, however all have been realities of multiple different people.

If you are struggling with a sexual problem, you are not alone in the matter, and there is both psychological and medical support available to help you. If you would like to tackle a sexual issue, whether alone or with a partner, you should not be afraid to look for the support of a sex therapist. Whether you are single or in a relationship, whether you are 20 or 70, there is no shame in wanting to have a better and more enjoyable sex life.

Nicola Falzon is a Psychology Officer & psycho-sexual educator within the Willingness Team, delivering training and workshops on mental and sexual health, managing different services such as Sex Clinic Malta, and organising different projects, training & events.

References

ISSM. 2021. What happens during sex therapy? | ISSM. [online] Available at: <https://www.issm.info/sexual-health-qa/what-happens-during-sex-therapy/> [Accessed 14 March 2021].

Briken, P., Matthiesen, S., Pietras, L., Wiessner, C., Klein, V., Reed, G. and Dekker, A., 2020. Estimating the Prevalence of Sexual Dysfunction Using the New ICD-11 Guidelines. Deutsches Aerzteblatt Online,.