People seeking treatment for sex addiction is skyrocketing, despite the fact it may not even be a real disorder.
According to a report on OnlineJournal.com, exact numbers are not clear, but therapists say they are seeing an increase in patients.
For example, when Alexandra Katehakis began as a sex addiction therapist in 1997, she had only a handful of colleagues. "There were five people in this field and we all knew each other," she said.
Now Katehakis runs the Center for Healthy Sex, complete with a team of counselors, treatment programs and therapy groups -- "a full-blown organization", she called it.
The Los Angeles Times reported recently that celebrity sex scandals are credited with the rise in people seeking treatment and in more facilities opening.
"My practice wouldn't exist without them," Katehakis says.
But is sex addiction even real? Dr. Martin Kafka, a Boston-area psychiatrist, said the scientific community is split over whether people can become addicted to sex in the same way they can be to alcohol or drugs.
There is simply no data to back up the assertion, he said. However, Kafka said that doesn't mean there won't be in the future.
"That's not to say that in the next decade that there won't be an empirical scientific backing for withdrawal and tolerance, but it's just not there now," Kafka said.