They've often made changes like putting their computer into other rooms.'I've got one client who frequently looks at cyber sex at work and just struggles to control that behaviour."Dr Squirrell says he often suggests people fighting an addiction to cyber sex install filtering devices or join support groups such as Sex Addicts Anonymous, which offer a 12-step program based on the Alcoholics Anonymous model.He says it is important to realise that not all cyber sexual activity is harmful."Most people can engage in cyber sex and take it or leave it.But there is significant minority, like there is with all addictions, where the behaviour just gets absolutely completely out of control," he said.Following the pattern well-established by other potentially problematic behaviors and activities (gambling, shopping, eating, drinking and using substances), the relatively new realm of sexual activity based on Internet technology has created another challenge for individuals and society.Around 40 per cent of respondents identified themselves as heterosexual, with others listing their sexual orientation as gay, lesbian or bi-sexual.
For others, though, the ability to engage in cybersexual activities inexpensively and anonymously has the potential to damage lives and destroy actual relationships that is similar to other forms of addiction.
A study has found that over half of all internet users who engage in cyber sex are either married or in a serious offline relationship.
Melbourne psychologist Marcus Squirrell says the study of 1,325 internet users shows significant levels of infidelity and addiction.
His use of digital devices to achieve sexual stimulation escalated.
He found that being locked into the fantasies and rituals that preceded the sexual acting out were just as compelling as the actual sex act, perhaps even more so.