Is Sex Addiction Genetic? The Answer, Revealed

As the digital age continues to dominate society, more and more people are seeking help with dependencies and addictions related to it. One very common addiction people are struggling with is sex addiction. While it’s been around for a long time, the increase in digital usage has caused it to spike in recent years amongst adults of all ages and genders. 

Like many addictions, sex addiction can be caused by many factors in life. For some, it can feel as though they can’t help it, it’s just a part of them. This prompts a very good question – is sex addiction genetic?

To find out if sex addiction is genetic, keep reading below!

What is sex addiction?

Sex addiction is a progressive condition in which an individual struggles with addictive behavior associated with intimacy and sex. It is far more than being a hypersexual person – sex addiction affects all aspects of the addict’s life, mostly in a negative way. It usually starts out harmless but then grows more intense until it consumes the addict’s life, relationships, and health.

Is it genetic?

Whether or not sexual addiction is, in fact, genetic, is still up for debate. However, research certainly suggests that genetics can play at least some role. For example, traits related to emotional dysregulation, instant gratification, anxiety, and depression all show a link to sexual addiction. Hormonal levels may also play a part, especially if the hormonal levels are higher than the average person’s.

Other factors

In addition to genetics, there are other factors in life that play into sexual addiction. These factors include psychology and society.


Psychological makeup can have a major impact on an individual. More specifically, negative childhood experiences and traumas can lead a person down the addiction road, especially if those experiences were related to sexual encounters. 

Additionally, individuals diagnosed with psychological disorders that alter brain activity and function (ex: bipolar disorder) can lead a person to sexual addiction. This is because their manic states can prompt them to engage in physical acts without considering the consequences. 


Society itself can also play a role in developing sexual addictions. This is due to society’s growing acceptance of sex and sexual experimentation, in person and online. Nowadays, society is leaning towards a world full of openness and liberation. The result is a lot of exposure to sexual activity in marketing, social media, and online. Without proper guidance and direction, vulnerable individuals can become addicted to this activity. 

Ask a Counselor

Do you want to learn more about your sexual addiction? If so, Coeur d’Alene Counseling can help you. We are sex addiction experts and we can help you walk through your past experiences, genetics, and psychological wellbeing to determine what led you down this path. Then, we can help you develop safe and healthy habits to fight your addiction in sexual recovery.

Don’t struggle with your addiction in secret – contact Coeur d’Alene Counseling today to discuss your recovery!