Sexual Dysfunction's, Paraphilias & Gender Identity Disorders
are often the most stigmatized in society. They are disorders
which disrupt the sexual response or cause pain during intercourse,
and last over a long period of time.
a) Sexual Desire Disorders: Sexual desire disorders
include hypoactive disorder which is when a person is generally
uninterested in sexual activity and even sexual fantasy. Sexual
aversion disorder is not just a lack of interest in sex but an
all out disgust and fear of sex. It is often the result of rape
or sexual abuse.
b) Sexual Arousal Disorders: Female sexual arousal
disorder is indicated by insufficient vaginal lubrication. As
well, it is thought that psychological causes are at work - such
as emotional distress or a history of sexual trauma. Male erectile
disorder occurs when men have problems getting and maintaining
an erection. Causes have been thought to be physical and psychological
and could be due to diabetes, MS and kidney disease, as well as
stress, depression, performance anxiety and avoidance of intimacy.
c) Orgasmic Disorders: Orgasmic disorders include
female orgasmic disorder, which is a problem of achieving orgasm,
and is reported by one fourth of all women. Male orgasmic disorder
is less common. Both are said to be caused by antidepressants
and anxiety about sex. Premature ejaculation is when a man reaches
orgasm before or shortly after penetration. It is regarded to
be due to psychological factors, as well as biological causes.
d) Sexual Pain disorders: Dyspareunia is the
experience of pain during sexual intercourse. This pain is usually
due to gynaecological or urological problems, but it may also
be a conditioned response to sexual trauma. Vaginismus is a problem
in which the muscles surrounding the outer part of the vagina
contract involuntarily when attempts are made to insert the penis.
It usually turns out to be the consequence of sexual trauma.
e) Fetishism: Fetishism involves a reliance on
inanimate objects or on a specific body part (to the exclusion
of the person as a whole) for sexual gratification's. Most fetishes
are associated with the human body. Common choices are fur, women's
stockings, women's shoes, women's gloves and women's underpants.
The fetishes sexual activity typically consists of fondling, kissing,
and smelling the fetish. Fetishism is a "spectrum disorder"
and exists on a continuum ranging from normal fetishes to abnormal
f) Transvestism: Transvestism is sexual gratification
through dressing in the clothes of the opposite sex. It is similar
to fetishism as it involves a fascination with inanimate objects.
Transvestites go one step further and actually put on their fetish
- the clothing of the opposite sex. They may also enjoy appearing
in public. Transvestites do not wish to be the opposite sex, only
to dress as them for pleasure. As well, transvestites should not
be confused with transsexuals, or people who experience gender
g) Exhibitionism: Exbhitionism is one of the
most reported sex offences. Courts often treat this seriously
as they feel that often exhibitionism leads to more serious sex
offences. More than 10 percent of child molesters and 8 percent
of rapist began as exhibitionists. Most are not dangerous and
do not attempt to have sexual contact with their victim. The typical
exhibitionist is a sexually inhibited, unhappily married young
man. He will go to a public place and typically show his penis
to a young woman. The exhibitionist gets aroused from the women's
response. Usually he will get sexual gratification in privacy
while fantasizing about the event. Sometimes exhibitionism occurs
as a symptom of some other disease - such as schizophrenia, epilepsy,
senile brain deterioration or mental retardation. Most are simply
shy, inhibited, sexually inferior feeling men.
h) Voyeurism: An element of voyeurism is usually
involved in normal sexual activity - for example magazines or
videos. The definition of abnormal voyeurism is someone who derives
their sexual pleasure from watching others, and this interferes
with the others lives (i.e., invasion of privacy, etc.). They
obtain their sexual gratification by invading others privacy,
such as by watching women undress or couples having sex. Often
the voyeur is typically like the exhibitionist in their personal
characteristics (See above).
i) Sadism and Masochism: It is relatively normal
for aggression to enter natural intercourse and aggressive sexual
fantasies are often acted out during normal intercourse. In sadism
and masochism, however, the element of physical or psychological
cruelty - inflicting pain and being subjected to it - assumes
a central role in sexual functioning. It is hard to draw a line
where these activities go from normal to abnormal, however evidence
of distress, interpersonal difficulty and impairment in functioning
due to the fixation are clues that the behaviour is abnormal.
j) Frotteurism: With frotteurism, a person obtains
sexual gratification from touching or rubbing against a non-consenting
person. Frotteurs usually operate is crowded places, such as buses
or subways, where they are likely to escape notice. Typically,
they will rub their genitals on a person, or touch the other person's
genitals or breasts. Part of the excitement for the frotteur is
their sense of power that they feel over their unsuspecting victim.
k) Paedophilia: Paedophiles are adults who seek
sexual gratification through sexual contact with children. Though
paedophiles rarely cause physical harm to children, they create
severe emotional distress in their victims. There are several
causes, including arrested development, social isolation and childhood
Emotional & Behavioural Disorders
& Somatoform Disorders
Stress & Physical Disorders
Psychotic and Neuropsychological Disorders
of Childhood & Adolescence
Retardation & Autism
& Violent Behaviour