• Wednesday, October 05, 2022

HEADLINE STORY

Working from home led to rise in porn addicts; people consuming up to 14 hours of porn a day

By: ShelbinMS

In July 2018, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared that sex addiction is a mental-health disorder.

However, many experts disagree about whether this is an actual diagnosis. According to NHS Choices, the WHO, states that compulsive sexual behaviour disorder is defined as an inability to control intense sexual urges leading to people neglecting their health – this behaviour is supposedly carried out despite often deriving no pleasure from being intimate.

Also, according to the relationship counselling service Relate, sex addiction is any intimate activity that feels ‘out of control’ – this could reportedly be sex with a partner, masturbation, pornography use, visiting prostitutes or using chat lines, Daily Mail informs.

Experts have cautioned that working from home, away from the prying eyes of colleagues has fuelled a surge in porn addiction in the UK.

Sex Addicts Anonymous UK reportedly told the Daily Mail that lockdown and pandemic stress has deteriorated people’s mental health and driven people to porn websites.

The Laurel Centre in London, the largest sex and porn addiction clinic in Britain, is reported to have said that it is now treating some remote workers who watch up to 14 hours of porn a day.

According to Dr Paula Hall, the centre’s clinical director, work from home (WFH) means people are now spending more time than ever alone in front of their computers.

“It means you’ve got more opportunity; you don’t have to wait until you get home at night, you can be more impulsive during the day,’ she told the Daily Mail.

Additionally, the Daily Mail informs that therapists spend around 600 hours a month helping people with porn addictions now – this is in comparison to just 360 hours a month in 2019.

The Laurel Centre has reportedly seen about 750 porn addicts just in the first six months of 2022, compared to 950 for the whole of 2019, said the Daily Mail.

Dr Paula has also informed that patients coming to the clinic this year are in need of more intensive treatment.

Doctors state that temptation which is just a few clicks away has turned some people who were casual porn watchers into addicts – thus, making it worse for those who already had a problem.

Also, according to experts the number of people in the UK seeking medical help for the addiction issue reportedly almost doubled during the pandemic (when remote working became common).

In 2019, approximately 1.7 million people said that they work mainly from home, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS) – this represents about 5 per cent of the total workforce.

This percentage reportedly surged to almost half (46.6 per cent) in April 2020 during the first lockdown caused by the Covid pandemic, amounting to about 13 million mainly working from home.

The most recent ONS data suggests that 9.9million people now mainly work from home, informs the Daily Mail.

But while the number of people working predominantly from home has reportedly dropped since the peak of the pandemic, hybrid working is very much prevalent.

Dr Hall states, working from home enables people to act on their impulses without worrying about colleagues seeing them.

A spokesperson from Sex Addicts Anonymous UK is reported to have said, “Porn addiction is a shame-based illness. We use compulsive sexual behaviour to escape from and block difficult feelings.”

“It’s easy to see why; sex is powerful and all-consuming and unlike alcohol or narcotics, we don’t have to visit the office or see our dealer.

“We face a public health crisis with toxic pornography available at no cost to anyone, which is especially worrying for our young people.”

Porn addiction can be loosely defined as regularly spending more than two hours at a time looking at adult material, said Dr Hall.

According to an earlier report featured in The Sun, the number of Britons addicted to porn increased as 60,000 sought help online last year. That is reportedly nearly double the ¬previous year’s total of just over 30,000.

Speaking about the current scenario, Nuno Albuquerque, consultant treatment lead for porn addiction at the UK Addiction Treatment group (UKAT) reportedly told The Sun (in an earlier report), “The rise in calls for help could very well stem from the Covid-19 pandemic, when during 2020 people spent a lot of time at home.

“Relationships were torn apart, being physical with someone outside of your household or bubble wasn’t allowed or was heavily restricted.

“It was a difficult time for human intimacy.

“This is when someone’s pornography usage could easily have enhanced, resulting in calls for help for over-usage or addiction rising the year after.”

The Daily Mail reports that a number of celebrities have also claimed to suffer from this condition, such as comedian Russell Brand, actor Michael Douglas, X-Files star David Duchovny, and actor Colin Farrell.

Celebrities including actress Jada Pinkett Smith and pop stars Will Young and Billie ¬Eilish, have also previously reported problems with porn addiction, informs The Sun.

Dr Hall adds, “If you’re regularly viewing pornography for longer than two hours it’s probably not about sexual arousal. It’s probably about escape.

“Addiction is a sign of a life that is unhappy and not being well managed.”

She warns that porn addiction could continue to rise as people worry about the cost-of-living crisis.

The Daily Mail informs that porn addiction is a form of sex addiction – people become addicted when they become dependent on the enjoyable feeling or ‘high’ experienced sexual activity.

Though NHS experts disagree on whether sex addiction actually exists or not, people can seek help for porn addiction by asking their GP to arrange for them to see a therapist for counselling, the Daily Mail said.

Treatment is reportedly available privately through clinics like the Laurel Centre with sessions running from £75.

Dr Hall is also reported to have recently launched Pivotal Recovery – a series of podcasts to help people beat porn addiction in a discreet way.

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