An Online Assessment of Personality, Psychological, and Sexuality Trait Variables Associated with Self-Reported Hypersexual Behavior

Arch Sex Behav. 2017 Apr;46(3):721-733. doi: 10.1007/s10508-015-0606-1. Epub 2015 Oct 26.


"Hypersexual" behavior represents a perceived inability to control one's sexual behavior. To investigate hypersexual behavior, an international sample of 510 self-identified heterosexual, bisexual, and homosexual men and women completed an anonymous online self-report questionnaire battery. In addition to age and sex (male), hypersexual behavior was related to higher scores on measures of sexual excitation, sexual inhibition due to the threat of performance failure, trait impulsivity, and both depressed mood and anxiety. In contrast, hypersexual behavior was related to lower scores on sexual inhibition due to the threat of performance consequences. Higher neuroticism and extraversion, as well as lower agreeableness and conscientiousness, also predicted hypersexual behavior. Interestingly, interactions among the variables assessed did not significantly predict hypersexual behavior, suggesting the possible existence of multiple and predominantly independent taxa for various persons reporting hypersexual behavior. Core personality features may also be present in persons with hypersexual behavior. Clinical implications and future research directions are discussed.

Keywords: Hypersexual behavior; Sexual compulsivity; Sexual excitation; Sexual impulsivity; Sexual inhibition.

MeSH terms

  • Anxiety Disorders
  • Cohort Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Internet*
  • Male
  • Neuroticism
  • Paraphilic Disorders / epidemiology*
  • Paraphilic Disorders / psychology*
  • Personality Inventory
  • Self Report*
  • Sexual Dysfunctions, Psychological / epidemiology*
  • Sexual Dysfunctions, Psychological / psychology*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires