Sexual therapy

SINEWS offers sexual therapy in Madrid focusing on improving your sexual health and well-being, to prevent risky behaviours and problems related to sexuality and to provide you with all the correct information you need.

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Important terms and definitions by the World Health Organization.


A central aspect of being human throughout life encompasses sex, gender identities and roles, sexual orientation, eroticism, pleasure, intimacy, and reproduction. Sexuality is experiences and expressed in thoughts, fantasies, desires, beliefs, attitudes, values, behaviours, practices, roles, and relationships. While sexuality can include all of these dimensions, not all of them are always experiences or expressed. Sexuality is influenced by the interaction of biological, psychological, social, economic, political, cultural, legal, historical, religious, and spiritual factors.

Sexual health

a state of physical, emotional, mental, and social well-being in relation to sexuality; it is not merely the absence of disease, dysfunction, or infirmity. Sexual health requires a positive and respectful approach to sexuality and sexual relationships, as well as the possibility of having pleasurable and safe sexual experiences, free of coercion, discrimination, and violence. The sexual rights of all persons must be respected, protect4ed and fulfilled for sexual health to be attained and maintained.


Biological characteristics that define humans as female or male. The two are not mutually exclusive, as there are individuals who possess both.

What is sexology and sexual therapy?

Sexology is the scientific study of human sexuality, including sexual behavior, sexual attraction, and sexual identity. Moreover, it studies how the sexuality affects other areas, such as physical health and society.

It is a multidisciplinary field, based on the sciences of psychology, sociology, anthropology, biology, and medicine. It also considers cultural history, religion, and ethics.

Sexual therapy is carried out by a clinical sexologist or sexual therapist, and focuses on improving sexual health and well-being, preventing sexual risk behaviours and problems related to sexuality, and providing correct information about sexuality. It is specialized in the study and treatment of people´s sexual problems.

Sexual therapy can be beneficial for people of all ages, genders, and sexual orientations. It is a collaborative process that involves open and honest communication between the therapist and the individual or couple. The therapist will work with the individual or couple to identify and address any underlying psychological or emotional issues that may be contributing to their sexual problems.

In addition to addressing specific sexual problems, sexual therapy can also help individuals and couples develop a more positive and fulfilling sexual relationship. This can include improving communication and intimacy, enhancing sexual pleasure and enjoyment, and addressing any conflicts or difficulties in the relationship.

What is the importance of studying and treating sexual health?

Having difficulties or problems related to one´s sexuality affects the physical, psychological, and social health. It can lead to psychological problems such as anxiety, low mood/depression, eating disorders, addiction of legal or illegal substances, etc.

What is a sexual therapist and sexologist?

A sexologist is an expert with knowledge about sexuality. A clinical sexologist or a sexual therapist is moreover trained in therapeutic skills and in how to apply the knowledge to treat problems related to sexuality. They have knowledge about sexuality in all ages and sexes, about anatomy, pleasure, sexual dysfunctions and problems, sexual traumas, guidance within sexuality, sexual history, and a lot more.

Sexologist is not a protected title, so anyone working with problems related to sexuality can call themselves a sexologist. It is therefore important to get informed about their background and education. It is perfectly ok to ask the sexologist directly about their education.

Having a health-related bachelor´s degree in Spain, will allow you to do a master´s degree in sexology and sexual therapy. As there is no specific bachelor´s degree, different sexologist has different areas in which they are specialists (nurse, teacher, psychologists, etc.), and their competence and specialisation differ.

In a master´s program, the sexology students learn about sexual development, sexual diversity, sexual boundary crossings and societal perspectives on sexuality amongst other things. They learn about sexuality from a multidisciplinary perspective: psychological, social, and biological.

Clinical sexologists work with a variety of problems related to sexuality. It can range between sexual disfunctions and minor difficulties in sexual relationships, to the treatment of more extensive problems such as lack of sexual desire or paedophilia. They also work with treatment of sexual abusers and victims of sexual abuse.

Who can receive sexual therapy, and what are the most common motives to seek therapy?

Anyone can seek help from a sexual therapist, regardless of age, gender, sexual orientation, and relationship status. The most common issues brought up in sexual therapy include:

  • Low libido or lack of sexual desire
  • Difficulty becoming or staying aroused
  • Erectile dysfunction or difficulty achieving or maintaining an erection
  • Premature ejaculation or difficulty delaying ejaculation
  • Difficulty achieving orgasm
  • Pain during sex
  • Sexual anxiety or performance anxiety
  • Difficulties with communication and intimacy in relationships
  • Concerns about sexual orientation or gender identity
  • Unresolved past sexual trauma or abuse
  • Concerns about sexual fantasies
  • Fear of committing to one or several persons
  • Faulty expectations for sexual activity (often caused by pornography)
  • Desire to explore new sexual activities in a safe manner (BDSM)

These are just a few examples of the issues that can be addressed in sex therapy. Ultimately, any issue that affects your sexuality, sexual experiences or relationships can be addressed in sex therapy.

What can you expect in sexual therapy?

During sex therapy, you can expect to talk openly and honestly about your sexual experiences, concerns, and goals without prejudice. Your therapist will listen to your concerns and help you identify any issues that may be affecting your sex life. A clinical sexologist should be able to understand, guide, and help people who struggle with problems related to sexuality.

In a first session, you can expect the therapist to ask about the motive for seeking therapy, give a brief explanation about how the therapy will work and start assessing/evaluating the problem. The information provided by the client is confidential, and the therapist is not allowed to disclose any of the information unless a life is in potential danger. The first questions are often aimed at discarding possible biological or physiological issues related to the problem through a series of questions, and sometimes a medical appointment. Further, the therapist commonly ask about your history regarding health, medication, difficulties, and how you experience the situation. Sometimes it might feel like the questions are irrelevant to the problem, but to assess that, the therapist will need the information first and will therefore ask questions in several contexts of your life. You should never be pressured into sharing information you do not wish to share, but the more information you do provide, the more the therapist will be able to help.

After several session of evaluating and assessing the particular case (the number of sessions depends on the specific problem), a session will be dedicated to give back the information in an organized and professional manner. To give the “diagnosis”. Together with the client, they will establish specific objectives for the therapy, and the sexologist will create an individualized intervention plan. You will then receive the information, advice and guidance adapted to your needs. You will often receive tasks to complete at home and outside of the consultations both during the evaluation and the intervention phase.

Sexual therapy sessions can be conducted individually or with your partner, depending on your specific needs and goals. The number and frequency of sessions will vary depending on your individual situation and progress.

In sexual therapy, you can expect to:
– Discuss your sexual history, experiences, and goals
– Explore the emotional, psychological, and relationship factors that may be affecting your sex life
– Develop strategies and techniques to improve your sexual experiences and relationships
– Address any concerns or misunderstandings you may have about your sexuality
– Improve communication with your partner(s) about sexual issues

If the sexologist cannot help you, they will derive you to another health professional or sexologist who is more specialized on that specific problem.

What are common techniques and interventions used in sexual therapy?

There are many techniques that are commonly used in sexual therapy to help people improve their sexual experiences and relationships. These techniques can vary depending on the individual’s specific needs and goals, as well as the therapist’s approach and training.

Some common techniques used in sex therapy include:

  • Education about sexual anatomy, physiology, and function
  • Communication and intimacy-building exercises
  • Relationship skills training
  • Sensate focus, a technique that involves touching and being touched in a non-sexual way to increase intimacy and pleasure, without the goal of sexual arousal or orgasm
  • Relaxation and stress-reduction techniques to help alleviate anxiety or performance pressure
  • Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) to address negative thought patterns and behaviors that may be impacting sexual function
  • Exercises to improve sexual function and performance, such as Kegel exercises for women and penis pump use for men
  • Exploration of personal values, beliefs, and attitudes about sex and sexuality
  • Referrals to medical professionals for the evaluation and treatment of physical sexual dysfunctions

These are just a few examples of the techniques that may be used in sex therapy. Your therapist will work with you to develop an individualized plan that addresses your specific needs and goals.

What are common misconceptions about sexology and sexual therapy?

  1. Only people with sexual problems seek out sex therapy.
    This is not true. Sex therapy can be helpful for anyone who wants to improve their sexual experiences or relationships, or who has concerns or questions about their sexuality.
  2. Sex therapy is only for people who are unhappy with their sex lives.
    While sex therapy can help people who are having problems with their sex lives, it can also be beneficial for people who are already satisfied with their sex lives but want to enhance them even further. 
  3. Sex therapists are only qualified to help with physical problems.
    In fact, sex therapists are trained to help with a wide range of issues related to sexuality, including emotional, psychological, and relationship issues. As mentioned, different sexologists have different backgrounds and are specialized in different areas.
  4. Sex therapy is embarrassing and invasive.
    While sex therapy may require you to discuss personal and intimate details of your sex life, it is not embarrassing or invasive. Sex therapists are trained to create a safe, non-judgmental environment where you can feel comfortable discussing these topics. Also, you should never feel forced to disclose information you are not ready to share.
  5. Sex therapy is only for straight couples.
    Sex therapy is not just for straight couples. It can be helpful for people of any sexual orientation, gender identity, or relationship status. Many sexologists are specialized from a gender perspective. 
  6. Sex therapy is a quick fix.
    Like other forms of therapy, sex therapy can take time and effort to be effective. It is not a quick fix, but rather a process of exploration and discovery that can lead to lasting positive changes in your sex life and relationships. The process is seldom lineal, and it is normal to go through ups and downs.
  7. Sexologists offer sexual services.
    They do not offer sexual services, they offer guidance, conversation and education about sexuality. 

Conclusion/summarize the importance of studying and treating sexual health

Overall, sexual therapy can be an effective treatment for individuals and couples who are experiencing difficulties related to their sexuality. It can help them improve their sexual health and well-being, and enhance their overall quality of life. The therapy can help clients learn to become more attuned to their own bodies and their partner(s)’s body and can help improve intimacy and sexual communication.

The goal of sex therapy is to help you improve your sexual health.