Before discussing the specifics of sex addiction, it may be helpful to briefly define addiction in general terms. Put simply, the criteria for addiction (of all types) are as follows:
- Preoccupation to the point of obsession with the substance or behavior of choice
- Loss of control over the use of the substance or behavior, typically evidenced by failed attempts to quit or cut back
- Directly related negative consequences: relationship troubles, issues at work or in school, declining physical health, depression, anxiety, diminished self-esteem, isolation, financial woes, loss of interest in previously enjoyable activities, legal troubles, etc.