Sex Therapy: Who can benefit and what to expect
What kind of problems can benefit from Sex Therapy?
Typically people experiencing concerns about arousal, performance, or satisfaction are likely to benefit from Sex Therapy. Among these problems are decreased or increased desire for intimacy, or in the case of a couple, mismatched or discrepant desire or interest in sexual intimacy. Both men and women can experience concerns about arousal and there are many causes and options for solving these problems. At any age, performance or lovemaking skills can be of concern, just as can issues around orgasm and satisfaction.
Additionally concerns about sexual trauma in one’s background, medical conditions that affect one’s sexuality, sexual pain disorders, concerns about gender identity or sexual orientation, and issues around sexual compulsivity or addiction are frequent concerns that people discuss with a Certified Sex Therapist.
The Sex Therapy process is very similar to that experienced with other mental health practitioners. The Certified Sex Therapist will meet with the person as an individual or with a couple in an office setting where an extensive history of the concerns will be taken. The Certified Sex Therapist will note both the psychological and the physical components and will establish one or more diagnoses. After this, a treatment plan will be proposed, usually with your involvement in its development. In some instances, the Certified Sex Therapist may work closely with the person’s physician, nurse, or other therapist or counselor to establish causes and remedies for the problems.
Depending on the diagnosis, the Certified Sex Therapist will educate the person or couple about the issue and about options for change. This educational process may occur through suggested reading material, through watching educational audio-visual materials, through discussion with the therapist, through attending workshops, or all of these therapy processes. Sometimes having more information will allow the problem to resolve. Sometimes more specific or intensive therapy will be needed.
If more specific therapy is needed, the Certified Sex Therapist may suggest a regular schedule of office appointments. Often, homework exercises to be practiced individually or as a couple in the privacy of one’s home between office appointments will be suggested. The homework may be as general as communication exercises or as specific as actual sexual experiences, depending on the progress in therapy and the person’s level of comfort with accepting direction.
In no instances will a Certified Sex Therapist engage in any kind of sexual activity with a therapy patient/client, whether in the office or in any location. To do so is a breach of ethics, and in some states and provinces is a crime.
About the author: Anne Aja, Ed.D. is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist who has been providing psychotherapy, hypnotherapy, marriage, family and sex therapy since 1982. Dr. Aja is a partner at Rock Landing Psychological Group.
Practice Specialties or interests: Dr. Aja works with individuals, couples and families. She is an AASECT certified sex therapist and is certified by the American Society of Clinical Hypnosis. Dr. Aja provides a full range of psychotherapy services to include:
Helping individuals heal wounds from the past and achieve a stronger sense of self or identity
Empowering individuals to create the life they want for themselves
Hypnosis as a means to expedite change
Helping couples create more intimacy and passion in their lives
Sex Therapy to deal with the problems of sexual functioning, low desire, sexual identity, sexual addiction, painful sex or the lack of sexual confidence.
Ages treated: Adults and some adolescents under special circumstances
Session Format: Individual, Couple and Family
Treatment Approaches: Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Interpersonal, Developmental, Hypnotherapy and Sex Therapy
Demographic Specialties: Dr. Aja works with individuals and couples of all races and sexual orientations.
Temple University BS 1969
Syracuse University MS 1975
College of William and Mary Ed.D. 1982
Licensed Professional Counselor
Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist