Touching Yourself: The Health Benefits of Masturbation
Masturbation! Nearly everybody does it, but almost nobody talks about it. Well today, we’re breaking the mold. Let’s dispel some myths and talk about the surprising benefits of this healthy activity!
Taking Down Masturbation Myths
There are plenty of urban legends about touching yourself “down there” that need to be cleared up! Let’s tackle some of the biggest ones now:
Masturbation Myth: You’ll Run Out of Orgasms
One myth that people pass around is that each man has a limited number of orgasms to experience. Therefore, masturbating can “waste them.” This couldn’t be further than the truth! Most men are always producing sperm and semen. There is no set limit to the amount of times you can experience bliss!
Masturbation Myth: It’ll Ruin Sex
Here’s a myth that hits men and women equally: the idea that masturbating will damage your genitals or reduce stimulation during intercourse. With frequent masturbation, the skin can become tender, but that can be solved by applying a bit of lubricant. Furthermore, using a vibrator will not reduce sensitivity of the clitoris. If anything, self-pleasure can teach you more about your own particular likes and dislikes.
Let’s Talk About the Benefits of Masturbation
Now that we’ve cleared up a few of those common myths, let’s talk about some of the benefits of masturbating. After all, people love touching themselves! In fact, according to Indiana University’s National Survey Of Sexual Health And Behavior, more than half of American adults admit to doing it between one to four times each week.
Here are some great reasons to make regular masturbation a part of your overall health routine!
1. More Than Just Good Feelings
Beyond the obvious immediate pleasure they provide, orgasms can also help you to distress. You see, when you orgasm, your body releases helpful dopamine, endorphins and oxytocin. It’s true: according to a study from the University of Michigan, orgasms relieve your stress by releasing helpful neurochemicals. These lift your overall spirits and activate the reward circuits in your brain. This produces a safe, natural high that lowers your cortisol levels. That means you can ease up on stress with a quick session of self-pleasure.
2. Feel Great About Your Body
Believe it or not, women who masturbate often feel more positive about their bodies. Contrary to popular belief, the so-called “shameful” act of self-pleasure can actually lead to a healthy boost of self-confidence. That makes sense. Knowing how to enjoy your own body is good for the soul. After all, self-confidence is a natural aphrodisiac.
3. Reduce Your Pain and Risk
Here’s a benefit of masturbation that many people don’t realize! Experiencing orgasms can help to soothe menstrual cramps and headaches. That’s right, sexual arousal increases the flow of blood to those sensitive areas, so it can actually help relieve discomfort.
Men aren’t about to be left out in the cold, though! There’s another study that suggests that masturbating can help to reduce a man’s risk of developing prostate cancer.
4. Keep Your Sex Drive Alive and Well!
For those of you who are not in a romantic relationship, there’s no reason to put your sex drive into hibernation! Instead, keep that fire alive with the power of routine masturbation! Self-pleasure keeps your head in the game and your reproductive organs healthy and ready to go.
5. It Just Feels Great
Beyond all these healthy benefits of masturbation… it just feels great! Why deprive yourself of a little well-earned pleasure? Make self-pleasure a part of your regular routine and feel the benefits of it long after you’re done.
- Katherine R Allen. (2011). The Role of Masturbation in Healthy Sexual Development: Perceptions of Young Adults. Archives of Sexual Behavior.
- Kılıç Onar D, Armstrong H, Graham CA. (2020). What Does Research Tell Us About Women’s Experiences, Motives and Perceptions of Masturbation Within a Relationship Context?: A Systematic Review of Qualitative Studies. J Sex Marital Ther.