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Pornography Addiction and Use Survey (PAUS™)

Developed by Begin Again Institute

The following assessment is offered as a guideline only to suggest a level of care based on your responses. The level of care necessary for you should be determined by an in-person assessment with a qualified mental health professional.

Welcome to your Pornography Addiction and Use Survey

1. Do you use porn to avoid or escape your feelings and problems or to alter your mood?
2. Do you become restless, moody, or irritable when attempting to cut down or stop viewing porn?
3. How often do you find yourself preoccupied with wanting to view porn?
4. Does it sometimes seem as if there is a force inside of you that drives you to view porn?
5. Do you feel empty or shameful after viewing porn and wish you could stop?
6. Have you ever promised yourself that you would never again view porn?
7. Have you lied to your family members, church leaders, or others about your porn use?
8. Does your use of porn interfere with, limit, or reduce the social, occupational, educational, or recreational areas of your life?
9. Have you stayed up late at night or woken up during the night to view porn?
10. Do you erase history, “cover tracks” and take steps to hide your porn use to avoid being caught?
11. Do you rationalize, justify, minimize, or make excuses about your porn use?
12. Do you somehow end up looking at porn nearly every time you get on the internet?
13. Do you worry something is wrong with you because of your porn use?
14. Have you lied, manipulated others, or made other unwise choices to view porn?
15. Do you view more porn and for longer periods of time than you initially intend?
16. Do you find yourself viewing different types of porn, perhaps outside your sexual orientation, to feel the desired excitement?
17. Does your porn use interfere with your moral/religious beliefs or your family values?
18. Do you minimize your porn viewing by using statements like “Everyone is doing it,” “No one is getting hurt,” or “This is not as bad as what others are doing.”?
19. Do you continue to view porn despite knowing it may jeopardize or damage your relationships, educational opportunities, or career opportunities?
20. Have you experienced repeated unsuccessful efforts to control, cut back, or stop viewing porn?
21. How often do you masturbate when viewing porn?
22. How often do you masturbate to the point of physical injury or infection when viewing porn?
23. How often do you view porn when there is considerable risk of being caught?
24. Over the last 6 months, how often has your partner/significant other requested a temporary or permanent separation because of your porn use?
25. In the last 6 months, how often have you thought about getting help for your porn viewing behavior?

Click to view your results.

*Data from this survey is not stored and your email will not be sold or distributed anywhere.

  • Category:
  • By Development Account
  • May 11, 2022

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If you’re a regular user of pornography, you may wonder, “Am I addicted to porn?” You might be surprised to learn that pornography addiction is a rising concern among the population. It’s believed that about 40 million adults in the United States admit to viewing pornography online every day.

Since pornography is so easy to access, the number of those who are addicted continues to rise. There are some ways to figure out if you might be addicted to porn.

What is Addiction?

Addiction happens in the brain. For some reason, the brain actually changes the way that it responds to certain stimuli. When you use a particular substance or engage in a behavior, the brain’s reward center is activated more intensely than in someone who doesn’t have an addiction.

Once the reward center has been activated, your brain wishes to keep feeling this positive release of chemicals, specifically dopamine, that occurs during the process. In order to get this feeling, the brain encourages you to use the substance or to engage in the behavior that brings about this state of euphoria.

Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that makes you feel good. The brain releases this chemical during pleasurable activities. When dopamine levels are high for some time, it can cause you to seek pleasurable sensations. In your case, this means watching porn.

Over time, pornography will become more and more important while other activities will be pushed to the sidelines.

Because of the brain’s excessive response to the stimuli, you will feel an overwhelming desire to engage in your addiction regardless of any negative consequences that may occur because of such behavior.

Am I Addicted to Porn? Signs of Pornography Addiction

Although there is no official consensus on porn addiction, it’s widely recognized as a real issue. While many people enjoy watching pornography from time to time, it can become a problem, and classified as an addiction, if it affects your daily life.

Here are some signs that you may have an addiction to pornography:

  • You want to stop watching porn, but you feel like you can’t
  • You think about pornography even when you’re doing something else
  • You spend more and more time watching porn and may even lose track of time
  • You give up other previously enjoyable activities to spend more time watching pornography
  • You find yourself spending more time watching porn in inappropriate places, such as at work or at school
  • You hide your porn-watching activities from those close to you
  • Your sex life is not satisfying without pornography, or you’re less satisfied with your partner
  • You neglect your responsibilities just to watch porn
  • You continue to watch pornography despite the negative consequences
  • You feel unsatisfied until you get your porn fix
  • You spend large amounts of money on pornography
  • You find the need to watch more extreme porn just to get the same high
  • You continue to engage with porn even though it bothers your partner
  • You feel guilty or ashamed by watching pornography, but you do it anyway

Causes of Pornography Addiction

While researchers haven’t determined one specific cause for this type of addictive behavior, they’re in agreement that it’s a complex issue that may have a combination of causal factors.

  • A chemical imbalance in the brain
  • Neural pathway changes within the brain
  • Certain brain diseases
  • Underlying mental health disorder

Are you at increased risk to be addicted to porn?

Consequently, in addition to possible causes, there are some risk factors that may be associated with becoming addicted to porn.

  • Issues with relationships
  • Ease of access
  • Personal or family drug addiction
  • Conflict in your home life
  • Past physical or sexual abuse
  • Unhealthy views on sex
how to know if you are addicted to porn

How Pornography Addiction Negatively Impacts Your Life

Complications can occur from porn addiction just like with any other condition. The guilt or shame that you feel from viewing pornography can cause you to have other mental health conditions, especially those like anxiety or depression.

Because it can take more to get the same high over time, you may find yourself watching harder pornography or possibly turning to using harmful substances in addition to watching porn.

If you’re spending money to watch pornography, this can quickly escalate, leaving you unable to pay your other financial responsibilities, such as mortgage, utilities, and other bills.

Watching porn can lead to you neglecting your partner. Alternately, it can damage the relationship you have if you always insist on watching pornography just to have sex, if you consistently expect your partner to fulfill fantasies based on your porn viewing, or if your partner is against pornography in the first place.

As you feel the need to engage with pornography in increasing amounts, this could affect your job as well. You may find that you’re not getting your work done, or you may even lose your job if you’re caught watching porn at work.

Spending more time on pornography can lead you to lose interest in other activities, such as hanging out with friends or even making sure you take a shower. If you continue on this pathway, you could find yourself alone and in debt until you get help for your addiction.

When to Seek Treatment

Although many people view porn, you might have a problem if it’s affecting your life. If you have to ask, “Am I addicted to porn?” then you may want to go to a professional for an assessment. In addition, you should consider seeing a therapist if any of the following applies to you:

  • You’ve tried stopping but feel you can’t
  • You develop mental health problems
  • You have other addictions
  • You feel guilty about your behavior
  • You develop sexual dysfunction with your partner
  • It’s affecting your relationship
  • It’s interfering with your home, work, school, or social life
  • You’re failing to meet your obligations

Many treatment options are shown to be effective in treating pornography addiction, including treating the root causes of sexual addiction. As a specific cause or combination of causes will be unique to your situation, you and your therapist will determine the best methods to help you recover and regain control of your life.

  • Category: Pornography Addiction
  • By Development Account
  • October 22, 2020

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