While the official diagnosis may be new, for many mental health professionals, the condition is something they see and discuss often. “A lot of the therapeutic community has been talking about this issue and working with patients seeking help for these kind of sexual problems long before it was canonized in the ICD-11,” Rory Reid, Ph.D., LCSW, assistant professor and research psychologist in the Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences at UCLA.
“This is the first time internationally that there is a category for dysregulated or problematic sexual behavior,” Shane W. Kraus, Ph.D., director of the Behavioral Addictions Clinic at the Edith Nourse Rogers Memorial Veterans Hospital in Bedford, Mass., and assistant professor of psychiatry at the University of Massachusetts Medical School.
“People have sexual behaviors that vary across people and cultures and groups, and we want to make sure we’re not overpathologizing people based on specific values,” Kraus explains. The CSBD diagnostic criteria are based on science rather than conjecture, and very specifically take morality and personal judgement out of the equation.