Currently, there is no cure, treatment, or medication to treat NPD, narcissistic traits, or sexual narcissism specifically. However, psychotherapy can be beneficial and enable people to understand their behavior, manage emotions, and take responsibility for their actions. It can also help them build self-esteem and healthier relationships.
While there is not much research investigating treatment for sexual narcissism, speaking with a therapist may be a useful approach for people with NPD. Although the conditions are different, this would suggest that psychotherapy may also be effective for people with sexual narcissism.
ResearchTrusted Source indicates that some narcissistic traits may decline with age, suggesting that it is not a fixed state of being and change is possible. This indicates that with therapeutic intervention, the ways a sexual narcissist relates to and interacts with others can improve.
However, it can be very difficult for a sexual narcissist to initiate therapy, as they may not always see an issue in their behavior. If a person suspects they are in a relationship with someone who has sexual narcissism, they may consider working with a therapist or counselor to learn strategies that may help the relationship, if they want to continue it. Therapy may also provide the necessary support if a person decides to leave the relationship.
Complications and long-term problems
Sexual narcissism can make relationships extremely difficult and might take a psychological toll on both those with narcissistic traits and prospective partners. Many people may also view these traits as undesirable, which could make it difficult for the person with narcissistic traits to form meaningful relationships outside of a sexual context.
While a sexual narcissist may appear charming, self-assured, and full of confidence, those outward behaviors typically hide low self-esteem. Low confidence and high sensitivity to what they perceive as criticism can make it very difficult for them to seek help.
Sexual narcissism may also cause long-term health problems. A 2012 studyTrusted Source suggests that the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis is chronically active in people with narcissistic traits. The HPA axis is a complex neuroendocrine pathway that plays an important role in the body’s response to stress.
In addition to poorer mental health outcomes, chronic HPA activation can increase the level of stress hormones such as cortisol in the body, which may increase the risk of cardiovascular disease.