Treatment Choices For Overcoming Sexual and Relationship Problems


Our sexual desires, interest, behaviors, attitudes and problems are not separate from the rest of our life. If you are currently having a sexual problem such as feeling impotent (unable to become aroused or unable to gain control over your sexual response), you may be feeling impotent, inadequate, or helpless in other areas of your life as well. If your sexual problem is about having difficulty achieving orgasm or continuing the sexual act until your partner is also satisfied, you may have a general fear of letting go, of trusting others, and of losing control.

Maybe your have a sexual problem that is part of a pervasive inability to enjoy the simple pleasures of life. Or maybe, the enjoyment of touching and being touched has been suppressed in you because of attitudes and behaviors of others in your earliest years. And for some people, religious and spiritual beliefs have interfered with sexual enjoyment, even within the sacred space of marriage.

This article offers a summary of types of treatments available to help you to overcome sexual problems.

Medical treatments may include:

– psychotropic medications to inhibit emotional problems (e.g., depression, anxiety, obsessive compulsive thoughts and behavior, mood swings)
– medications to enhance sexual desire and sexual arousal (hormone therapy, erection enhancement, arousal enhancement)
– surgery to enhance physical attraction, change sexual characteristics, or eliminate pain symptoms

Physical treatments may include:

– Biofeedback
– Physical Therapy (e.g., Pelvic Floor Massage)
– Massage and Bodywork Therapies – (e.g., Massage, Craniosacral Therapy, Acupressure, Acupuncture, Pelvic Floor Treatment)

Sex Therapy treatments may include:

– Sexual History
– Anatomical Education
– Sensate Focus, Squeeze Technique, Stop/Start, Kegel Exercises
– Videos, Vibrators, Dilators, Sex Toys, Aphrodisiacs
– Tantra Sex Practices, Surrogate Partners
– Somatic Experiencing

Couples and Marriage Therapy Treatments may include:

– Listening skills, empathic reflection, and insight training
– Exploring the depths of desires, emotions, reactions and experiences
– Negotiating, compromising and communication skills
– Exploration of alternative viewpoints and lifestyles
– Extended family and family of origin dynamics
– Cultural, ethnic, religious and spiritual concerns
– Male/female roles and roles in and outside the relationship
– Learning to resolve both internal and interpersonal conflicts
– Managing, reducing or relieving symptoms of emotional distress
– Changing behaviors to improve couple functioning

Individual Psychotherapy may include:

– A specific psychotherapeutic style or an eclectic approach, incorporating several different theories, methods and techniques
– An orientation toward the past as the source of problems in the present
– Little interaction between the analyst and patient, until the analyst offers interpretations of what the patient is experiencing
– A “holding environment” that allows the client to feel safe enough to deeply explore important life issues
– Long-term treatment, sometimes several times per week

Body Psychotherapy may include:

– Somatic Experiencing
– Body Metaphors and Body Image
– Touch
– Empathy and Safety
– Body, Mind and Spirit
– Mental Health Skills

Group Psychotherapy and Workshops may include:

– Reduced isolation and greater insight from sharing with other people who have similar concerns
– Emotional containment, emotional expression, empathy and support
– Developing and adhering to guidelines and rules of conduct

Telephone and Online Counseling may include:

– Insight, understanding and support
– A sense of safety and anonymity
– Easier communication because verbal cues are not distracting

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