TASHRA has been chronicling the health and healthcare experiences of kink-identified people since 2012. Since then, our research has maintained the following goals.

  • To discover the health concerns and needs of erotic, sexual, and gender-diverse people.
  • To improve culturally competent and affirming medical and mental health care practice.
  • To produce information that helps to educate and dispel common misperceptions of kink-identified people.

As the field of Kink Studies continues to develop, TASHRA is one of the leaders in the field addressing the intersection of kink and health.  Three important lessons from our research, so far, include:

  • Roughly 50% of kink-involved people never disclose their kink activities to doctors or therapists, which may impact the quality of care they receive
  • A common type of kink injury involves complications from bondage, including nerve compression
  • Most people, about 85%, experience kink as a positive influence on their mental health

TASHRA Kink Health Disparities (Short overview)

Our Work

In 2014, their first pilot research, called the Kink Health Project produced preliminary information on the healthcare experiences of kink identified individuals in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Building on the Kink Health Project, the 2016 Kink Health Survey (KHS) was the first of its kind to produce comprehensive information on the health of over 1000 kink identified individuals from throughout the United States.

Our most current research project, the International Kink Health Study (IKHS), focuses on the physical and mental health, childhood experience, sexuality and healthcare of those around the world with recurring fantasies and practices that involve kink/BDSM/leather and fetish.

Mental Health Statement

Talking about mental health can be uncomfortable, especially to kink-interested people, since important parts of our identity and interests have been inaccurately and often, painfully, reduced to stereotypes and stigmatization.

TASHRA’s researchers have deep personal ties and love for the kink community and this means that it’s extra important to us that we ask about your mental health from a place of care, compassion and utmost confidentiality.

We want to understand the systems that may have impacted all aspects of your wellbeing and to use the information to create meaningful change in how healthcare is provided to you. We hope this knowledge provides you with even better-informed self-care. Our aim is to honor the honesty and vulnerability of our participants by committing to use the collected data to assist us in our fight to make the world a better place for kink-interested people everywhere.