Updated: OCTOBER 26, 2020

Scotophilia is a term that implies a strong preference or fetish for darkness as opposed to daylight. People who have this preference for the darkness are known as scotophiles.

The term is derived from the Greek prefix scoto, meaning darkness or blindness, and the suffix philia, meaning love or desire. Scotophilia is also sometimes spelled skotophilia.

This condition is also known as nyctophilia.

More About Scotophilia

Most definitions of scotophilia do not mention sex or sexuality. Instead, the term is used in a very general sense to refer to any individual or creature that thrives in the darkness. However, as with any condition known as a paraphilia, there may be a sexual component, especially when this term is applied to humans.

For example, scotophiles may prefer to have sexual interactions at night with the lights off. They may feel sexually aroused when in dark spaces and have fantasies about having sex in dark places.

It’s quite common for humans to have a preference for sex with the lights off rather than on. However, the preference must be especially strong to be classed as scotophilia. However strong this preference is though, scotophilia is a fairly manageable paraphilia which can usually be accepted as part of a person’s sexuality. If scotophilia does become problematic, therapy or hypnosis may be beneficial.


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