Internet Porn Addiction Focus Of Australia-first Study

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9th February 2010, 11:12am - Views: 477





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University of Sydney Media Release

09 February 2010

Internet porn addiction focus of Australia-first study 


In the first study of its kind University of Sydney researchers are investigating how addiction

to internet porn affects people’s work, finances and relationships.

 

Some 70 per cent of men and 30 per cent of women access internet porn, according to Dr

Gomathi Sitharthan, the researcher behind the study and Deputy Coordinator of the

University of Sydney’s Graduate Program in Sexual Health.

 

“Viewing porn online becomes a major problem only when people become so preoccupied

that they spend 16 to 18 hours a day doing nothing else but watching porn, with serious

impacts on relationships, work, studies, and finance,” Dr Sitharthan said.

 

“In recent years we have seen increasing numbers of clients coming to counselling practices

with online porn addictions. They come from all walks of life: students,

teachers, lawyers, health practitioners and priests. 

 

“Often they will come to counselling with another problem, and the underlying problem of

addiction to internet porn may come out after two or three sessions. The sensitive nature of

this issue means many people find it very hard to talk about.”

 

Internet porn addiction is a growing problem partly due to its easy accessibility in the

comfort of people’s home, according to Dr Sitharthan. But currently there are limited

treatment options.

 

The survey is looking to further our understanding of internet pornography addiction and

how best to offer assistance to overcome it.

 

Dr Sitharthan hopes there will be broader public discussion of the issue, particularly given

the recent spotlight on the topics of sex addiction (in the case of Tiger Woods) and the ready

availability of explicit images online (in the case of the Macquarie banker caught viewing

revealing pictures of Miranda Kerr).


The public are invited to take part in the survey, which takes about 30 minutes to complete


 

It can also be accessed through the home page of the University of Sydney’s Graduate

Program in Sexual Health http://sydney.edu.au/health_sciences/sexual_health . Click on

‘research’, then ‘current research’. The results of the study will be released later this year. 

 

To interview Dr Sitharthan contact Kath Kenny at the University of Sydney Media Office

(02) 9351 2261 or 0434 606 100. 

 






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