Sexologist: what is it, online, course, questions, tips, when to go?

Frequency does not always mean quality. This is because a study by the company Durex Global Sex Survey indicated that 49% of Brazilians have sex at least 3 times a week – the rate, which is considered high, does not reflect the satisfaction of the participants.

53% of all respondents – regardless of how many times a week they have sex – are dissatisfied or dissatisfied with their sex life.

Experts – and the United Nations (UN) – indicate: sex is part of life and, therefore, having a quality sexual routine interferes in several aspects.

Even those who consider themselves sexually satisfied can count on some tips and advice from sexologists. After all, the specialist can act in more areas than it seems.

What is a sexologist?

The sexologist is a health professional specializing in issues that permeate human sex and sexuality . Generally, it focuses on affective intermediation, resolution of love conflicts and therapy for individual aspects of sexuality (for example, insecurity with the body itself).

Despite being a specialty, the area is very wide and is not limited to therapeutic care. A doctor who has sexology can work towards dysfunctions or difficulties during sex, such as the lack of certain hormones.

For doctors, an area of ​​great relevance is forensic sexology, in which the professional investigates criminal allegations involving sexual abuse, for example.

In order to act as a sexologist, it is necessary to do a postgraduate course in the area, which is mainly aimed at medical professionals and psychologists.

But physiotherapists, social workers, educators, lawyers and even administrators who, at some level, work with themes about sex, affectivity, sexuality and relationships can enrich professional practice with specialization.

The approaches allowed by the area are mainly:

  • Sex therapy : focus on doctors and psychologists;
  • Sex education : focus on higher education professionals with pedagogical training;
  • Social sexology : focus on higher education professionals with an interest in the social dynamics that involve the exercise of sexuality.

Due to the dimension of sexology – the field of study and performance of the sexologist -, the professional will focus his skills according to his interest.

For example, administrators and managers can apply knowledge to work on aspects favorable to the company, improving employee interactions.

After all, social relationships are also interfered by the way we deal with friends, partners and ourselves.

What is human sexology?

Sexology is a field of scientific study that deepens knowledge in several aspects of human sexuality.

At first, it may be easy to consider that sexology pays attention to aspects only directly related to the sexual act.

You probably remembered Laura Muller answering questions about premature ejaculation or curiosity about orgasm in some YouTube video.

But, in fact, there is a much larger field of work, research and performance, since sexuality – which is the object of study of sexology – is complex.

In addition to direct relationships (how to improve sex? How to have more orgasms?), The field pays attention to historical and social interferences (how did we have sex in the past? What has changed? Why has it changed?).

These studies, which are not recent, have produced objective knowledge that serves medicine (as in the area of ​​gynecology and urology) and intersubjective knowledge that serves psychology, for example (such as the understanding of sexual desire).

It may even seem that sexuality is an area of ​​interest for health professionals. After all, it’s about reproduction, pleasure and body functionality, right?

It’s not quite there.

The field is so vast that even philosophy and sociology have already produced innumerable knowledge and have great interests in the relations of sex and human sexuality.

Michel Foucault, philosopher, launched the book The History of Sexuality, in which his focus is to determine the reasons and interactions present in human sexuality and the reflexes in society. You can tell that the subject is a long one.

So, in general, sexology gives attention to aspects of human sexuality in an interdisciplinary way, considering the integrated biological, psychological and social aspects.

Sexologist course

Currently, sexology is not yet recognized by the Brazilian Classification of Occupations (CBO), being considered only specialization. Therefore, there are no undergraduate courses in the area, only specializations or extension courses.

The training is, in general, aimed at health professionals – such as doctors, nurses, psychologists and therapists.

However, it is possible that other formations may join, such as philosophers, sociologists, social workers and educators, for example.

In general, courses present subjects related to:

  • Interpersonal relationship;
  • History of sexuality;
  • History of sexology;
  • Sexual dysfunctions;
  • Therapeutic approach for couples;
  • Human Development and Sexuality;
  • Conflict resolution;
  • Social medications.

In Brazil, the field of sexology has a recent history – compared to other studies. It was around the 1920s that sex and its implications began to be talked about – in education, in health, in society.

And only 10 years later, in 1930, did the first sexologists emerge who strove to establish the area as a recognized field of knowledge.

Forensic sexology

Forensic sexology is an area or part of forensic medicine (which is medical practice applied to the legal sphere, such as crimes or investigations).

Therefore, forensic sexology is a field of action that assists in the investigation of complaints, crimes and deaths that, in some way, are related to sex or sexual rape.

Recalling that sexual crimes are provided for in the Penal Code. The forensic sexologist has an important role in investigations of rape or sexual violence (in which there is abuse of the victim without penetration), for example.

In addition, the forensic sexologist can act in cases where a newborn is abandoned – investigating whether the suspected woman has had a recent pregnancy or delivery – or infanticides (the mother, shortly after delivery, causes the baby to die).

Is sexology the same as sex?

No . Sex, in general, comprehends sexual practice in an objective way and the body is the center of attention.

To have sex, there must be partners. Sex can also be a reference for bodily characteristics – female and male genitalia. But it is also directly related to the body and pleasure during sexual practice.

Sexuality is a broad field that does not necessarily involve the presence of other people. Or, when it does, it can be on more subjective issues, for example, social relationships with colleagues or strangers.

The intellectual, historical, social and individual aspects are considered relevant when analyzing the sexuality of each person.

In what areas can the sexologist work?

There are several activities of the sexologist, such as clinics, schools and companies. Regardless of the location, it is usually necessary to resort to the multidisciplinary nature of the profession – which involves biological, social and emotional knowledge.

However, in each location, the professional can work with a focus on the following areas:

Biological and anatomical

More focused on the medical field, the sexologist can assist in biological and functional issues.

Erectile dysfunction , low libido, hormonal and anatomical changes (such as malformation of the sexual organs) can be worked by the professional who has gynecological or urological training.

Medications and therapies can be prescribed, always considering the multifactorial aspects of the problem.

That is, the sexologist also considers the psychological and social impacts that these changes can cause.

In this field, the professional can work in clinics, hospitals, companies and the public area (forensic sexology), serving patients or clients who have complaints related to bodily functioning.

Social and school

Social education is part of the sexologist’s routine in different aspects. For example, a sex therapist who serves clients is likely to provide tips for making affective and social relationships better.

Through conflict resolution between couples, therapies to alleviate personal problems (such as low libido due to emotional factors) and sexual education itself (demystifying taboos, teaching about limits and desires).

At this point, the sexologist can also act in the school sphere, guiding children and adolescents on sex and sexuality.

Recalling that sex education may involve clarification on:

  • Pregnancy and contraceptive methods;
  • IST / DST;
  • Sexual abuse;
  • Development and puberty;
  • Beginning of sexual life;
  • Consent and sexual freedom;
  • Organic functioning;
  • Problems, dysfunctions and pathologies related to sex.

Psychological and emotional

The specializations focused on therapy and conflict resolution are mainly aimed at psychologists and psychiatrists.

The sexologist can, in these cases, work in clinics and provide continuous care (that is, an emotional treatment).

Lectures and courses can be held in which the emotional aspects that interfere in people’s sexuality and sexual life are worked on.

In such cases, it is the conditions of low libido, insecurity with the body itself , difficulty in erection due to emotional factors, anxiety , love conflicts, difficulties in relationships and other diverse conditions.

What is Sex Therapy?

For anyone who has ever been to a psychologist or therapist there are no great mysteries about what sex therapy is like.

The process is, in general, very similar to other consultations, the main difference being the focus of the professional’s performance.

While a therapist or psychologist works more broadly, the sexologist is qualified to pay attention to the issues of the patient’s sexual life and sexuality.

The way in which care will be conducted and the approach will be determined by the patient and the professional. Thus, each problem and objective will be decisive to define the form of therapy.

Consultation or treatment can be done individually or as a couple. The idea is to find the best way to make the patient comfortable and solve the problem.

Therefore, clarifying doubts, providing information, offering educational material, working on mental and emotional aspects can be some of the dynamics of the consultation.

Therapy can help to improve sexual life, allowing the patient to work on his affective relationships, difficulties in loving and social relationships (with friends, colleagues, bosses, relatives) and anxieties that can affect sexual performance.

Where to find a sexologist?

Sexologists, in general, provide private care or health insurance, as the specialty is not yet offered by the Unified Health System (SUS).

In the public service, it is possible to consult a general practitioner, gynecologist or urologist when the problem is related to sexual difficulties.

Whoever needs emotional or affective support can turn to the psychologist, a specialty offered by SUS.

Aiming at the ease and convenience of service, some professionals provide online service (in these cases, the vast majority is private).

How is a consultation with the sexologist?

The consultation with a sexologist is similar to that of other specialists – whether doctors or therapists.

It is important that the patient always feel free to talk, establishing a close and trusting relationship with the professional.

In general, consultations with sexologists may include ordering tests and prescribing medications – for example, if you have erectile dysfunction or libido problems.

The goal is to check that there are no diseases or conditions causing the problem.

Already sexologists psychologists can work with conversations and other therapeutic techniques to promote mental improvements to the patient.

It is worth mentioning that the professional does not establish physical-intimate contact with the patients, cannot break the confidentiality of the consultation or act in a way that hurts or affects the patient’s physical or emotional integrity.

The need for treatment (other consultations) or the frequency with which they should occur are determined by the sexologist after the evaluation – there is no ideal amount, weekly therapy or just one consultation may be necessary.

Benefits of sex

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Maintaining a healthy sex life brings a number of benefits that are generally well known. Much is said about the good mood, the disposition and the energy that sex can promote.

Not to mention the orgasm itself, which is the culmination of pleasure. There are also benefits for self-esteem , the strengthening of the relationship between the couple and the discovery (or better knowledge) of their own body.

But does not stop there. Because medicine also points out that improving the sexual routine helps in biological health.

Remember that there are no rules. Sex can be several times a week or for much longer periods. What really counts is quality, not quantity.

Here are some good effects of having sex:

Reduces pain

During sex, the body produces several hormones and neurotransmitters, including endorphins. That same hormone released during physical activities.

Its action on the body is involved with the relief of painful sensation, having an analgesic effect.

But the benefits don’t stop there. There are indications that another hormone released during orgasm, oxytocin, along with endorphins may help to relieve chronic headaches and joints.

Spend calories

It may not be the same expense generated by a crossfit class , but sex can help eliminate up to 300 calories, depending on the length of the relationship.

Helps immunity

There are researchers interested in the direct relationship between sex and immunity. There is evidence that associates happiness with the strengthened immune system.

As having a healthy sex life generates well-being, there may be a relationship between them.

But research published in the American journal Planned Parenthood Federation of America establishes a more direct relationship.

Having sex at least once a week can make the body produce more immunoglobulin A (IgA). The substance is an antibody present in the mucous membranes of the intestine, stomach and mouth.

Therefore, according to the study, quality sex and the ideal frequency can, in fact, protect the body.

Protects the heart

During sex, muscles are very much in demand, blood circulates faster, the heart speeds up and, therefore, cardiac work is increased.

It depends on the length of time and the intensity of the relationship, but in general having sex can be considered a mild to moderate activity.

You can’t replace walking 3 times a week, but you can count a few more minutes on the physical activity calculator.

Improves sleep

After sex, the body relaxes. There is a feeling of well-being, lightness and, due to hormones and neurotransmitters released during intercourse, sleep is favored.

In addition, there is still a feeling of exhaustion. Together, these factors contribute to a good night’s sleep.

Read more: Change habits and find out how to sleep well

When to look for a sexologist?

Looking for a sexologist need not be just when there is a problem or difficulty in relation to the sexual sphere.

This is because sex therapy professionals can help to improve affective and emotional relationships – which impacts on the patient’s well-being.

But, in general, the conditions most benefited by going to the sexologist include those related to:

Sexual desire

Any change or condition related to sexual desire and its forms of expression can be addressed by the sexologist.

The professional can act, for example, treating the lack of libido through medications (in the case of sexologists) or through therapy (sexologists).

Some conditions are:

  • Cases of excess or lack of sexual interest;
  • Differences or sexual inadequacy between the couple;
  • Deviation or loss of desire for the other person;
  • Difficulties in reaching orgasm.

Excitation (biological responses)

People who feel sexual desire but, for some reason, their bodies do not respond appropriately can turn to the sexologist.

In general, these cases involve problems with erection, vaginal lubrication or difficulty in having orgasm, for example.

It is worth remembering that each person has a different body response and, therefore, it is up to the specialist to analyze and consider all biological, social and emotional factors in each case.

Affective intermediation

People or couples who want to improve the relationship – whether in the sexual or affective part – can turn to the sexologist.

The professional will assist in the relationship, giving tips and alleviating conflicts.

In this case, the performance of the sexologist depends a lot on the type of problem. For example, people with difficulty in expressing or showing sexual interest, or couples with difficulties in maintaining a quality of sexual life.

What are the male and female sexual perceptions and behaviors?

The perception of sex depends on the time, the location and the culture. A number of factors interfere with the way societies behave.

In 2016, a survey requested by Durex, a condom company, counted on the participation of 1,004 Brazilians and outlined an indication of how life is and sexual behavior.

While 51% of men are dissatisfied with sex, the rate rises to 56% among women, although half of all participants have more than 3 sexual intercourse per week.

Asked about the benefits of sex, 68% indicated that they feel more in a good mood, but only 25% feel more attractive.

But, while about 65% say it is important to satisfy their partner, roughly the same amount said they have difficulty admitting that they have a sexual problem – which generally makes it difficult to find professionals who solve the problem.

The result? About 52% of men say they always reach orgasm, while only 22% of women gave the same answer.

Male complaints

Among them, the most common complaints, according to the Family Planning Association (APF), are:

  • Disturbance of hypoactive sexual desire : absence or frequent low of sexual desire;
  • Erectile dysfunction: difficulty or inability to maintain an erection;
  • Ejaculatory dysfunction : changes in the quality or quantity of ejaculation;
  • Inhibition of orgasm : difficulty or inability to reach the body;
  • Dyspareunia : pain during sex.

Female complaints

Among women, according to data from the Family Planning Association (APF), the most common conditions are:

  • Hypoactive sexual desire : decrease or absence of prolonged or frequent sexual desire;
  • Sexual aversion: total or partial aversion to sexual contact;
  • Disturbance of sexual arousal : difficulty in getting aroused (decreased vaginal lubrication);
  • Orgasm disturbance : inability or difficulty in reaching orgasm;
  • Dyspareunia : pain in the genital or pelvic region during sex;
  • Vaginismus : involuntary contractions of the muscles of the vagina, causing great pain during sex.

Read more: Sex in menopause: 5 tips to combat libido reduction

Online sexologist

Online therapies are options that use the intermediation of the computer, tablet or cell phone to be performed.

It is important to note that internet service is regulated by the Federal Council of Psychology, in the update of resolution 11/2018, and sexologists are allowed to attend patients online.

The most suitable conditions are those that involve guidance, education or clarification of sexual doubts – knowing that there are conditions in which face-to-face care is necessary.

Therefore, it is up to the professional to advise the patient on the legitimacy of online care.

In addition, only professionals duly qualified as psychologists can make this type of consultation, and it does not apply to sexologists, for example.

The values ​​can be quite variable, according to the professional and the purpose of the consultation, but on average services are offered between R $ 150 and R $ 400 per session.

Tips: Questions and Answers to Improve Sex Life

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A number of factors interfere with sexual life and can impair or affect the person or couple’s satisfaction.

Sometimes small changes in behavior can solve problems or improve sex – even when there are no complaints.

In general, these are questions that everyone should ask – for themselves and their partner:

What gives you pleasure?

It is important that the person knows his body and his desires at the time of sex. But, in addition to seeking your own pleasure, talking to your partner makes the relationship better.

According to the survey on sexual satisfaction, carried out by the company Durex, 63% of the interviewees stated that satisfying their partner is a must.

Therefore, the best way to build a pleasurable affective and sexual relationship for both is through dialogue.

Is there curiosity about something?

It is important to know the desires and possibilities of each person and the couple. As there is a lot of taboo and fear involved in the topic, sometimes it is necessary to talk openly with the other person to discover possibilities or establish limits.

Sexologists, in general, can help people and couples to enjoy sex, bringing news to the routine.

Am I (are) happy with my sex life?

This is a simple question and the answer is often overlooked. That’s because almost half of the participants in the Durex sexual satisfaction survey say they are sexually unsatisfied.

No matter exactly the reason – emotional, biological or affective – if the answer is unhappy, dissatisfied or not satisfied, it is time to look for a solution.

Sometimes the solution is simple and professional guidance is enough to make life – in all spheres (social, affective, sexual) – more pleasurable.

I’m happy, but can you improve?

Like everything in life, the sexual routine – even if it is already satisfactory – can be improved. This is where sexologists can help, too.

Many people think that going to the professional should only occur if there are physiological dysfunctions or problems related to sex.

However, the sexologist can help clarifying doubts, giving suggestions, working on emotional aspects and – depending on the specialty – building a deeper knowledge about himself.


Sexologists can help in several areas related to sex and sexuality.

Whether through sex education, affective counseling, sexual performance tips or problem solving and pathologies, the professional has gained prominence when the goal is to improve people’s sexual health and routine.

To learn more about specialties and body care, follow the Healthy Minute!

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