|dc.description.abstract||A worldwide increase in pornography addiction (Allen, et al., 2017; Grubbs, Exline, Pargament, Volk & Lindberg, 2017; Harper & Hodgins, 2016; Peter & Valkenburg, 2016; Steelman, 2011) is a mental health concern as it is often associated with dysfunction in sexual arousal and intimate sex (Harper & Hodgins, 2016; Schneider, 2000); depression; loneliness and marital conflict (Fagan, 2009; Newstrom & Harris, 2016). In this study, pornography is viewed from a self-regulation perspective, defined as the ability to monitor and modulate one’s own behaviour, feelings, and thoughts in order to pursue long-term goals and to act in accordance with one’s values (Berger, 2011; Stosny, 2011).
Even though self-regulation theory provides scientists with a credible departure point to better understand pornography addiction, no studies could be found that attempted to synthesise previous findings and to provide a comprehensive picture or hypothetical model for further research. It is therefore not exactly clear which self-regulation mechanisms are typically involved in pornography addiction, especially during adulthood when the brain reaches maturity regarding self-regulation (Berger, 2011). The aim of this study was therefore to critically review and synthesise the scientific literature for evidence about the mechanisms of self-regulation failure and pornography addiction in adulthood. A second aim was to propose a hypothetical model for self-regulation failure and pornography addiction in adulthood based on a critical reflection of the results gained.
A critical review was done to synthesise the literature and to develop the hypothetical model. Keywords were used in conjunction with Boolean operators to comprehensively search scientific databases linked to EBSCO Discovery Services. Full-text, peer-reviewed, empirical studies published in English from 2000-2019 were included in the search. Critical appraisal was based on criteria from NICE (2012), QCC (2008), and the Joanna Briggs Institute (JBI QARI) (2017) to identify 21 studies for final inclusion in the review. Thematic analysis (Braun & Clarke, 2006) was used to identify themes from these studies. The study was approved by the NWU’s ethics committee with approval number NWU-00402-20-A1.
Three main types of self-regulation failures emerged, namely poor emotion regulation, impaired self-control, and poor self-efficacy. In addition, factors like hypersexuality, neuroticism, introversion, gender, religion, and social distress were identified as important role players in the relationship between self-regulation and pornography addiction. A hypothetical model for self-regulation failure and pornography addiction, based on three premises, was proposed, namely (i) there is an interactional effect between self-regulation failure and hypersexuality; (ii) social factors mediate or moderate the relationship between self-regulation failure and pornography use and addiction; and (iii) personality has an interactional effect with self-regulation failure, but also a moderating effect on the relationship between self-regulation failure and pornography use and addiction.
Based on the conclusion and limitations of the study, it was recommended that more research needs to be done to fully understand the complex nature of pornography addiction and especially how it relates to self-regulation and other contextual factors.||en_US