Hypersexuality describes human sexual behavior at levels high enough to be considered clinically significant.
A popular misconception is that Nymphomania refers to a state of overactive sexual desire in females. This is not so. Nymphomania is a psychological disorder that, whilst characterized by high-levels of sexual desire and obsession with sex, refers to a condition where a female feels suddenly and inextricably compelled to demand sexual intercourse irrespective of the situation at hand, place, etc. An example of a nymphomanic would be a woman who, not caring that there's a police precinct around the corner, demands that her partner make love to her in the middle of a busy thoroughfare because she suddenly feels like it and cannot control herself. Or, despite being as sad as any normal person would be, wants to have sex in the middle of a funeral service. This is the distinguishing feature of nymphomania; lack of regard for context so the sexual act is over-prioritised and supersedes all other logical functioning. A nymphomanic wife would not care that her children are coming home in two minutes, she wants her husband now; her libido comes first. In males the condition is referred to in clinical settings as satyriasis.
The threshold for what constitutes hypersexuality is subject to debate, and critics question if a standardized diagnostic threshold even exists. Sex drive varies widely in humans, and what one person would consider a "normal" sex drive might be considered excessive by some, and low by others. The consensus among those who consider this a disorder is that the threshold is met when the behavior causes distress or impaired social functioning.
Hypersexuality and physical conditions
Hypersexuality can be a symptom of bipolar disorder, and is generally associated with the manic phase of the disease. It can result in behavior that the manic person later bitterly regrets.
Hypersexuality can also be caused by Kluver-Bucy syndrome, a neurobehavioral syndrome associated with bilateral medial temporal lobe dysfunction.
Hypersexuality has sometimes been reported following brain injuries and diseases that cause dementia and loss of impulse control.
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