Sex therapy is talk therapy designed to work with people’s sexual function concerns. Sex therapy professionals acknowledge the right of individuals to have expert knowledge and treatment available when seeking help for sexual issues. Sex therapists provide this help by using their specialized skills and knowledge in both individual and couples therapy in a therapeutic and professional setting.
Sex therapists are trained in a wide range of sexual issues. Individuals seeking sex therapy may be working on problems with arousal, orgasm, painful intercourse, sexual trauma, problematic sexual behavior or shame regarding their sexual self. Couples seeking sex therapy may want help with difference in desire, restoring an intimate connection, healing from infidelity, exploring different sexual options such as kink and BDSM or relationship structures like polyamory or open relationships. Sex therapists also work with those who wish to resolve problematic behavior such as exhibitionism, compulsive sexual behavior or overuse of pornography. Sexual abuse and trauma, sexual identity and gender are all under the expertise of sex therapists.
Sex therapy success depends on many factors including the motivation of the client, the appropriateness of the goals determined by the therapist and client, the skills of the therapist, as well as the nature of the issue. As in any type of therapy, a key component of success is how comfortable the client is with the therapist. This is especially true in sex therapy where the client will entrust intimate details of his sexuality with the therapist.
What to Expect in Sex Therapy?
Different therapists will approach treatment in a variety of ways but overall you can expect to discuss explicit details of the issue as well as provide a detailed sexual history. You will be educated on your sexual problem by the therapist as well asked to read books or articles, view clinical videos or complete specific homework assignments. It is important to remember that clients always have the right to decline assignments or ask questions to fully understand the significance of such assignments.
Why Choose a Certified Sex Therapist?
AASECT sex therapists have met specific requirements in education and sex therapy training, while practicing under the supervision of AASECT certified supervisors throughout the country. Continuing education is required in order to maintain certification, which lends to working with therapists who are knowledgeable and current regarding sex therapy techniques, topics and issues. AASECT (American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors and Therapists) also offers a network for their certified therapists to consult and learn from one another when faced with unique or challenging cases. Any therapist can claim to practice sex therapy; however, they have most likely not been trained to the same degree and depth as a certified sex therapist.