In normal people, sexual response has four phases namely: desire, arousal, and orgasm and resolution respectively (Montgomery, 2008). Sexual motivation and desire and sexual wish are the chief components of phase one. These components are the psychological, biological and social aspects of sexual response. On the other hand, phase two is triggered by psychological and physiological stimulation. Phases three and four occur only after the first two phases have been fulfilled.
There are, however, two forms of sexual desire disorders: sexual aversion disorder (SAD) and hypoactive sexual desire disorder (HSDD). These disorders occur in a small percentage of the general population.
According to DSM-IV-TR, persistent or deficient or absence of sexual motivation and drive amount to HSDD (Montgomery, 2008). SAD, on the other hand, is defined as recurrent or persistent avoidance of, or extreme aversion to all forms of genital sexual contact with a sexual partner (Montgomery, 2008). DSM-IV-TR suggests that six subtypes of SAD and HSDD exist: due to psychological factors, situational, generalized, acquired, and lifelong and due to the combination of these factors (Montgomery, 2008). In addition, for an individual to be diagnosed with a sexual dysfunction disorder, there must be a psychophysiological problem, and the problem must cause marked interpersonal difficulty or distress. Besides, this problem should not be accounted for in other diagnoses of Axis I. In addition, sexual disorders due to substance abuse or medications must be ruled out (Montgomery, 2008).
Therefore, it is essential to note that in normal people, sexual response has four phases namely: desire, arousal, and orgasm and resolution respectively (Montgomery, 2008). However, people with HSDD and SAD have a distorted sexual response cycle.
Anorexia and Bulimia
An eating disorder denotes a marked disturbance to a person’s diet; this may involve either eating too little or too much food.
People who have this disorder are pre-occupied with the urge of becoming slender. Many of them eat certain foods or small quantities of food in order to trim their weight. In other words, this disorder is characterized by a relentless pursuit of thinness. This habit leads to the avoidance of normal or healthy weight. Anorexic patients restrict their eating; they eat very small quantities of food.
The treatment of this disorder strives to restore a healthy weight of the affected person, treating the underlying psychological issues, and eradicating thoughts and behaviors causing insufficient eating. This approach is executed through psychotherapy and nutritional counseling. Medications such as mood stabilizers, antipsychotics and antidepressants are essential.
This disorder is characterized by eating large amounts of food frequently and a general lack of control over this habit (NIMH, 2014). This disorder is accompanied by other strange behaviors such as induced vomiting, excessive exercise, fasting, excessive use of diuretics or laxatives or a combination if these practices in order to compensate for their eating problem. Unlike anorexic patients, bulimic patients tend to maintain their normal weight, but some gain weight, and as such, they tend to be preoccupied with the need to cut weight (NIMH, 2014).
Just like in anorexia, treatment of bulimia encompasses both psychotherapy and medications. Cognitive behavioral therapy is the most common form of psychotherapy that is employed in the treatment of bulimia (NIMH, 2014). CBT seeks to treat the strange behaviors associated with bulimia. On the other hand, medications such as antidepressants are also helpful.
Montgomery, K.A. (2008). Sexual Desire Disorders. Psychiatry, 5(6), 50-55. Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2695750/
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH). (2014). Eating Disorders. Retrieved from http://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/publications/eating-disorders/index.shtml