noun Psychiatry.

a type of mental disorder characterized by a preference for or obsession with unusual sexual practices, as pedophilia, sadomasochism, or exhibitionism.

Nearby words

  1. paraph,
  2. paraphase amplifier,
  3. paraphasia,
  4. paraphernalia,
  5. paraphia,
  6. paraphimosis,
  7. paraphrase,
  8. paraphrasis,
  9. paraphrast,
  10. paraphrastic

Origin of paraphilia

1920–25; para-1 + -philia, on the model of paranoia

Also called sexual deviation. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for paraphilia



any abnormal sexual behaviour; sexual anomaly or deviation

Word Origin for paraphilia

C20: from para- 1 + -philia, from Greek philos loving

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for paraphilia


Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for paraphilia


[păr′ə-fĭlē-ə, -fēlyə]


A psychosexual disorder in which sexual gratification is obtained through highly unusual practices that are harmful or humiliating to others or socially repugnant, such as voyeurism or pedophilia.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.