For the first time, the U.S. Surgeon General, Dr. Vivek Murthy, released a statement issuing a call to action to end the public health crisis of drug and alcohol addiction. According to Dr. Murthy, “The most important thing is we have to change attitudes towards addiction and get people into treatment. It is a disease of the brain, not a character flaw.”
This concept of addiction being a brain disease is not really new and there are scientific studies to prove that the brain does change when addiction is in the mix. While the Surgeon General’s statement dealt with addiction to substances, specifically a cry for help for opioid addicts, it has further implications. He advocates changing our attitudes about addicts. And this has broader implications which include the category of sex addicts.
The International Institute for Trauma and Addiction Professionals faculty member, Debra Kaplan, who is a certified sex addiction therapist, author, and speaker explores why the diagnosis of sex addiction is so controversial. In her recent article she states, “Sex addiction is still being declared as a controversial and nonexistent problem by those who wish to close their books and minds to the problem and the people who seek help for sex and porn addiction. But to the deniers, note the growing body of evidence in the research from neuroscience.” Check out her article, The Sex Addiction Battleground, for the whole story.
Let’s all work together to destigmatize sex addiction. Recognizing it as an addiction is the first step.