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“Do I Have a Porn Problem?” This Questionnaire May Help You Find Out

If watching porn is so common, when exactly does consuming porn become problematic, compulsive, or even addictive? This “test” can help you find out.

By November 22, 2021No Comments

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Note: diagnosing an addiction to pornography can only be made through in-depth interviews and with a certified counselor or psychologist.

According to a 2020 study, an estimated 91.5% of men and 60.2% of women consume porn.Solano, I., Eaton, N. R., & O'Leary, K. D. (2020). Pornography Consumption, Modality and Function in a Large Internet Sample. Journal of sex research, 57(1), 92–103. https://doi.org/10.1080/00224499.2018.1532488COPY 

While there is plenty of neuroscientific evidence to show that porn addiction is very real,Love, T., Laier, C., Brand, M., Hatch, L., & Hajela, R. (2015). Neuroscience of Internet Pornography Addiction: A Review and Update. Behavioral sciences (Basel, Switzerland), 5(3), 388–433. https://doi.org/10.3390/bs5030388COPY  experts have pointed out that the majority of porn consumers are not addicted.Willoughby, B. J., Young-Petersen, B., & Leonhardt, N. D. (2018). Exploring Trajectories of Pornography Use Through Adolescence and Emerging Adulthood. Journal of sex research, 55(3), 297–309. https://doi.org/10.1080/00224499.2017.1368977COPY  So if watching porn is so common, when exactly does consuming porn become problematic, compulsive, or even addictive?

To start, we want to be clear that it’s not our intention to diagnose anybody as a porn addict—only a certified counselor or psychologist can do that, so reach out to a local licensed mental health professional if that’s something you want to explore. And regardless, it’s important to note that whether or not someone’s porn habit can be classified as an addiction or compulsion, consuming porn can still have serious negative effects. From warping young people’s sexpectations to fueling the demand for sex trafficking, even non-addictive porn habits can be problematic.

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The “test”

So how do you know if your porn habit has crossed over into problematic territory? And how do you know if you need professional help?

Psychologists from the Eötvös Loránd University in Hungary have created a scale for identifying viewers who may have a problematic porn habit.Bőthe, B., Tóth-Király, I., Zsila, Á., Griffiths, M. D., Demetrovics, Z., & Orosz, G. (2018). The Development of the Problematic Pornography Consumption Scale (PPCS). Journal of sex research, 55(3), 395–406. https://doi.org/10.1080/00224499.2017.1291798COPY  The “test” they have created—the “Problematic Pornography Consumption Scale” or PPCS—is intended as an initial assessment to gauge the severity of participants’ porn habits.

Related5 Signs You Might Be Addicted To Watching Porn

In their study designed to assess the reliability of the scale, participants were asked to answer how often the following statement applied to them in the past 6 months, using this rating system:

Never = 1, Rarely = 2, Occasionally = 3, Sometimes = 4, Often = 5, Very Often = 6, All the Time = 7

I felt that porn is an important part of my life

I used porn to restore the tranquillity of my feelings

I felt porn caused problems in my sexual life

I felt that I had to watch more and more porn for satisfaction

I unsuccessfully tried to reduce the amount of porn I watch

I became stressed when something prevented me from watching porn

I thought about how good it would be to watch porn

Watching porn got rid of my negative feelings

Watching porn prevented me from bringing out the best in me

I felt that I needed more and more porn in order to satisfy my needs

When I vowed not to watch porn anymore, I could only do it for a short period of time

I became agitated when I was unable to watch porn

I continually planned when to watch porn

I released my tension by watching porn

I neglected other leisure activities as a result of watching porn

I gradually watched more “extreme” porn, because the porn I watched before was less satisfying

I resisted watching porn for only a little while before I relapsed

I missed porn greatly when I didn’t watch it for a while

Related: Why Porn Can Be Difficult to Quit

The “results”

According to the study, a total score of 76 or higher suggests that you might be at risk for compulsive viewing habits, and maybe even addiction.

The scale was created using 772 respondents, 390 females and 392 males. And when researchers were first conducting the test, they found that at least 3.6% of those studied were in the “at-risk” group for addiction to pornography. Imagine what the percentage might be if the hundreds of millions of visitors to Pornhub each took this assessment.

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What’s your score?

If you scored 76 or higher, it might be time to take more serious steps in overcoming your habit, including speaking with a mental health professional. But even if you didn’t score high, we’re here to tell you that the potential risks of porn simply aren’t worth it. No matter how you slice it, porn can contribute to sexual exploitation, harm relationships, and negatively impact mental health.

There is hope

Regardless, recovery from porn is absolutely possible! The fact is, there is no miracle cure for a porn struggle. Every person in recovery is still going to have to be patient and consistently working toward a full recovery and life free from porn, but it is possible.

We’re not a recovery organization, but as an awareness organization, we want to help as many people understand the harmful effects of pornography as possible. We also want to help inspire those who are already struggling to live their best life. After all, you deserve it.

Need help?

For those reading this who feel they are struggling with pornography, you are not alone. Check out Fortify, a science-based recovery platform dedicated to helping you find lasting freedom from pornography. Fortify now offers a free experience for both teens and adults. Connect with others, learn about your unwanted porn habit, and track your recovery journey. There is hope—sign up today.

Fight the New Drug may receive financial support from purchases made using affiliate links.

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