Is mastubation good for health
Is Masturbation Healthy?
In This Section
- Is Masturbation Healthy?
You may have heard some crazy things about masturbation being bad for you, like it makes you grow hair in weird places; it causes infertility; it shrinks your genitals; or once you start masturbating you’ll become addicted to it. None of that’s true. Masturbation isn’t unhealthy or bad for you at all. Masturbation can actually be good for your health, both mentally and physically. And it’s pretty much the safest sex out there — there’s no risk of getting pregnant or getting an STD.
When you have an orgasm, your body releases endorphins, which are hormones that block pain and make you feel good. The good feelings that come with an orgasm happen whether you’re masturbating or having sex.
Plenty of research has shown the health benefits of masturbation. Masturbation can:
release sexual tension
help you sleep better
improve your self-esteem and body image
help treat sexual problems
relieve menstrual cramps and muscle tension
strengthen muscle tone in your pelvic and anal areas
Masturbation also helps you figure out what you like sexually. Where do you want to be touched? How much pressure feels good? How fast or slow? Learning how to have orgasms on your own can make it easier to have one with a partner, because you can tell or show them what feels good. And when you’re comfortable with sex, your body, and talking to your partner, you’re more likely to feel comfortable protecting yourself against STDs and unintended pregnancy.
Some people masturbate often — every day, or even more than once a day. Some people masturbate closer to once a week, once every few weeks, or every now and then. Some people never masturbate, and that’s fine too. All of these are perfectly normal.
Masturbation only becomes “too much” if it gets in the way of your job, your responsibilities, or your social life. If that’s a problem for you, you may want to talk to a counselor or therapist.
Some people learn when they’re young that masturbating is wrong or bad, so they feel guilty about doing it. If you feel that way, try to remember that most people masturbate. It’s perfectly normal, and there’s nothing wrong with it. Talking to a counselor or therapist may help if you have trouble getting over guilty feelings.Was this page helpful?
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Health Benefits, Side Effects, Myths, FAQs
In addition to providing pleasure, masturbation can benefit your health and well-being by helping you achieve better sleep, better mood, and stress relief, among other benefits.
Masturbation is a common activity, which involves touching the genitals or other sensitive areas of the body for sexual arousal or pleasure.
Masturbation a natural and safe way to explore your body, feel pleasure, and release built-up sexual tension. It occurs among people of all backgrounds, genders, and races.
In fact, one study in older adults estimated that between 27 to 40 percent of women and 41 to 65 percent of men reported masturbating within the past month.
Despite the myths, there are actually no physically harmful side effects of masturbation.
Sometimes, excessive or compulsive masturbation may be considered harmful or lead to other mental health concerns.
Typically, masturbation is a fun, natural, and healthy act.
Keep reading to learn more about the potential health benefits of masturbation along with myths, side effects, and more.
Masturbation is a healthy sexual activity. It can benefit your physical and mental health.
There are limited studies on the benefits of masturbation, but there are studies on sexual intercourse and stimulation.
Research and anecdotal reports suggest that sexual stimulation, including stimulation through masturbation, may help you:
- relieve built-up stress
- sleep better
- boost mood
- prevent anxiety and depression
- feel pleasure and enjoyment
- relieve cramps
- release sexual tension
- improve self-esteem
- have better sex
- better understand your wants and needs
According to one 2015 study in married women, those who masturbated reported experiencing more orgasms, higher self-esteem, increased sexual desire, and greater satisfaction with their marriage and sex life.
Couples may also mutually masturbate to explore different desires, as well as avoid pregnancy. Self-pleasuring, when compared with partnered sex, also helps you prevent sexually transmitted infections (STIs).
Some research suggests that regular ejaculation may lower the risk of prostate cancer, though doctors aren’t exactly sure why.
A 2016 cohort study of 31,925 participants and 18 years of follow-up found that a lower risk of prostate cancer was associated with a higher frequency of ejaculation. A survey of current literature from 2016 noted that 44 percent of studies analyzed reported a similar link between frequent ejaculation and lower prostate cancer risk.
There’s no evidence, though, that ejaculating regularly protects against advanced prostate cancer, so more research is needed.
Hormone changes during pregnancy cause some pregnant people to feel heightened sexual desire. Masturbation is a safe way to release sexual tension during pregnancy.
Self-pleasure may also help ease pregnancy symptoms, such as lower back pain. You may feel mild, irregular cramping, or Braxton-Hicks contractions, during and after orgasm.
They should fade away. If the contractions don’t disappear and become more painful and frequent, contact a doctor right away.
Some people with high risk pregnancies are sometimes advised to avoid sexual activity, as orgasm could potentially increase the risk of early labor. However, research is conflicting.
Masturbation doesn’t have harmful side effects. However, some people may feel guilty about masturbating or have issues with chronic masturbation.
Masturbation and guilt
Some people may feel guilty about masturbating because of cultural, spiritual, or religious beliefs.
Masturbation is neither wrong nor immoral, but you may still hear messages that self-pleasure is “dirty” and “shameful.”
If you feel guilty about masturbating, you can speak with someone you trust about why you feel this way and how you can move past your feelings of guilt, if you would like to do so.
Therapists who specialize in sexual health may be a good resource to help you overcome feelings of shame or guilt associated with masturbation.
Addiction to masturbation
Some people can develop an addiction to masturbation, or what some call “sex addiction.” However, this term is not recognized in the “Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders” (DSM-5) and is not considered by some to be a true addiction.
You may be spending too much time masturbating if masturbation causes you to:
- skip chores or daily activities
- miss work or school
- cancel plans with friends or family
- miss important social events
Masturbating may be considered too much if it causes harm to your relationships and other parts of your life or if it interrupts your work or studies.
It may also hurt your romantic relationships and friendships because you don’t spend as much time with your loved ones as you used to or you don’t pay attention to their needs.
If you’re worried you may be masturbating too much, consider speaking with a doctor or a counselor about ways to cut down.
If you would like to masturbate less, consider talk therapy. You could also try cutting down by replacing masturbation with other activities. Next time you have an urge to masturbate, you can try:
- going for a run
- writing in a journal
- spending time with friends
- going for a walk
There are several common myths about masturbation that have not been proven by scientific research.
For example, masturbation does not cause:
- hormonal imbalances
- changes in the size or shape of the penis
- decreased sperm count
- vision loss
- hairy palms
- erectile dysfunction
- low libido
Some people may also believe that masturbation can negatively impact romantic relationships or may indicate that one partner is experiencing sexual dissatisfaction.
However, though excessive masturbation can have negative effects, many people find that masturbating alone or with their partner can actually enhance their sex life.
Furthermore, masturbation may be associated with several health benefits and is considered one of the safest forms of sexual activity as it does not have a risk of pregnancy or STIs.
For those who have sexual dysfunction, enhanced stimulation — including masturbation — can help increase sexual desire and sensitivity.
In fact, one 2018 review published in the journal Sexual and Relationship Therapy reported that vibrator use may be beneficial for the treatment of erectile or ejaculatory dysfunction and anorgasmia, or difficulty reaching orgasm. According to the review, vibrator use may also be associated with improvements in sexual desire and sexual function for both males and females.
Masturbation may affect sensitivity during sex for people with a penis because of their technique. Research from 2022 has shown that too much stimulation on a penis during masturbation can decrease sensation.
Sometimes referred to as death grip syndrome, this can make it more difficult to reach orgasm during sexual intercourse.
If you use a tight grip, try changing your technique during masturbation to restore sensitivity levels during sex.
What are the effects of masturbation?
Sexual activity, including masturbation, is linked to the neurotransmitters dopamine and oxytocin in the brain, which are involved in regulating mood and increasing feelings of pleasure.
Sexual satisfaction has also been associated with many other benefits, including decreased stress levels, improved self-esteem, and enhanced life satisfaction in older adults.
Are there any good reasons for abstaining from masturbation?
Though masturbation can be a healthy, pleasurable, and natural activity, some people may choose to abstain from masturbation when it becomes compulsive or begins to interfere with other activities or relationships. Additionally, some may also decide to abstain from masturbation for personal or religious reasons.
What’s a healthy level of masturbation?
According to the International Society for Sexual Medicine, there is no “normal” frequency for masturbation. While some people may masturbate daily, weekly, or monthly, others may choose not to masturbate at all.
As long as it doesn’t negatively affect your relationships or interfere with other activities like school or work, masturbating as frequently or infrequently as you’d like is safe and healthy.
Masturbation is a healthy, natural, and safe way to practice self-care.
Masturbating may have many benefits for your mind and body. There are typically no harmful side effects.
Feel free to enjoy self-pleasure without guilt or shame. Speak with a therapist or someone you trust about any negative feelings you may have.
Five Health Benefits of Masturbation You Didn't Know About
Sign up for our 'Context' newsletter to help you sort things out.Image caption,
Masturbation is an integral part of a healthy sex life
Masturbation is defined by the Royal Academy of Spain as the stimulation of one's genitals and erogenous zones with the hands or other means for the purpose of obtaining sexual pleasure.
For a long time, masturbation was considered shameful and even harmful in society, but these views have nothing to do with reality.
- What is a normal sexual life?
- Will there be sex robots soon?
According to experts, masturbation is not only pleasant, but also beneficial for health.
BBC Latin American Service in Spanish BBC Mundo spoke with andrologist and sexologist Mariano Rosello Gaia, who spoke about five benefits of masturbation that you may not have known about. nine0005
1. Help with menstrual pain
Masturbation can reduce or even completely relieve pain, especially associated with the menstrual cycle, as well as other gynecological symptoms.
If you masturbate during your period, it has an analgesic and anti-inflammatory effect and generally reduces discomfort throughout the period.Image caption,
Masturbation acts as an analgesic
"All substances that enter the blood at the time of orgasm act as analgesics for premenstrual pain," says Rosello. nine0005
"In addition, there is a release of tension in the genital area, which usually causes discomfort and provokes pain," he adds.
2. Strengthening the immune system
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According to a study published in the journal Sexual and Relationship Therapy, men who masturbate have better immune systems. nine0005
"In men, ejaculatory ejaculation activates the vas deferens, which prevents infections. Studies show that people who have more orgasms have higher levels of immunoglobulin A (IgA), which is an antibody and provides local immunity," says doctor.
What's more, a study by the Melbourne Cancer Epidemic Center shows that men aged 20 to 50 who masturbate more than five times a week have a lower risk of cancer. nine0005
In women, in turn, masturbation prevents the development of endometriosis, a disease of the urogenital area, which can lead to infertility
It also helps prevent various infections, as masturbation opens the cervix, helping to release phlegm and other secretions.
3. Improving sleep
There are many ways to fight insomnia, but perhaps the safest, most enjoyable and natural of them is masturbation - especially for men. nine0005 Image caption,
The release of endorphins that occurs during orgasm contributes to good sleep
According to the expert, after an orgasm, a large amount of hormones, endorphins and catecholamines, as well as cytokines, are released into the blood, which help to sleep.
"A report on this effect was presented last year by the French Medical Research Council, and there are other scientific papers in this area," he added.
Ejaculation can help you fall asleep, because after it, prolactin levels rise sharply and dopamine levels fall, which explains the state of drowsiness after orgasm. nine0005
4. Improvement of general well-being
Masturbation improves health in general - both on the biological and psychological levels.
"The release of endorphins and catecholamines reduces stress levels and improves mood," says Rosello.
5. Help in relationships with a partner
There is a widespread myth that masturbation destroys sexual relationships in a couple.
According to experts, this is absolute nonsense. In fact, it has exactly the opposite effect. nine0005 Image caption,
Masturbation - whether shared or mutual, or alone - strengthens relationships in couples can provoke or intensify it, and thus sex becomes more enjoyable and varied.
But that's not all.
"In general, partners should constantly work on their sexual relationships and intimate life. A good orgasm strengthens the relationship and the family as a whole," says sexologist Mariano Roseglio Gaia. nine0005
Benefits and harms of masturbation - Afisha Daily
February 14, 2019 17:54
Afisha Daily talked to the doctor-sexologist of the Mental Health Center and Amina Nazaralieva about the myths that make us ashamed of it.
Masturbation is not so simple: today we do not have enough research to say anything with certainty. Everything is complicated by the fact that even with the complete anonymity of the surveys, people do not reveal themselves to the end and do not tell the whole truth. nine0005
First of all, it is connected with stigma. Almost all religions condemn masturbation. We remember very well the horror stories that the hair on your arms will grow, that you can go crazy, become a pervert, and so on. There is a lot of shame and guilt associated with masturbation, it is embarrassing to talk about it in our society - even in many advanced sex education programs, the topic of masturbation is not addressed. And among progressive parents who talk about sex with children, only one in twenty touches on this topic. nine0005
However, masturbation is very common. Almost all men masturbate: at least, studies have about 70%. And about half of the women, and maybe more.
Scientists have found a lot of good things in masturbation. That is, either it does not affect anything, or it has a positive effect.
8 reasons to masturbate
Of the obvious advantages: when masturbating, the risk of an unplanned pregnancy or genital infections tends to zero.
According to my personal observations, people who practice masturbation are much more satisfied with their sex life and their own body than others.
Women who masturbated in childhood or adolescence are more likely to have positive sexual experiences in adulthood. In addition, they have healthier ideas about themselves.
Masturbation debunks the myth that vaginal orgasms are "correct" and clitoral orgasms are not. The fact is that women prefer clitoral masturbation to vaginal masturbation, and many of them use vibrators. By the way, men also sometimes use selectors during masturbation. nine0005
According to some studies, men who masturbate are more likely to use condoms.
The lion's dose of techniques in sex therapy is in one way or another connected with masturbation - whether it is working with a couple or individually. Such techniques are used, for example, if we want to help a woman experience an orgasm for the first time in her life or return a lost one; for a man - to control the time of the onset of his ejaculation; couple - not to experience pain or discomfort during sex.
Masturbation is always part of the healing process. Except when a person's religion and beliefs forbid him to masturbate. nine0005
Sometimes masturbation is better than sex, especially if the sex is bad or violent. Masturbation is something understandable and predictable, you always know what you need. Many women reach orgasm only with clitoral stimulation and often the partner cannot do it better.
If a person has an attraction to an object that he cannot approach for various reasons, masturbation is an excellent way out.
If you don't feel like masturbating, it's okay
Some people are not interested. The absence of masturbation in a person's life can only become a problem if he himself suffers from this.
It happens that a person is not interested in sex in principle. Asexuality is normal as long as it doesn't make you feel uncomfortable. On the other hand, most people who consider themselves asexual still masturbate, but the reasons for masturbation may differ: they practice non-directional masturbation, which means that the process is not accompanied by fantasies. nine0005
Is masturbation harmful?
Today, scientists argue about the existence of sex addiction, but a compulsive sexual disorder is discussed, in which a person suffers from a constant desire to have sex.