If you’re a guy – and since you are on this page I’m assuming you are – there’s a good chance you can really relate to this one. Why?
Because you do it, you love it, but you don’t really know what it actually does to your body (aside from, well, the obvious result). Seriously, what ARE the health effects of masturbation?
To find the answer for you, I’ve risen to the challenge – so to speak – researching both the benefits as well as the potential masturbation side effects. What are the masturbation effects on health; and should you maybe jerk off less?
Hold on tight my friend; you’re in for a ride…
The beneficial health effects of masturbation
You will be pleased to hear that science supports masturbation! There are a few ‘buts’ – which I’ll get to further below – but in general, the health effects of masturbation are indeed beneficial.
As such, masturbation is a normal sexual activity that’s not just fun, but it also results in several physical and mental health benefits.
Now before I get to the exact benefits I have to put a side note here, which is that most of the studies mentioned have been done on sexual intercourse instead of masturbation.
However, the result – stimulation – is still the same and will thus have the same beneficial effects.
So, let’s whack out that list of benefits, shall we?
Relieve yourself from stress and anxiety
There’s nothing like blowing off some steam and releasing that build-up tension with a good ole wank.
This is partly because masturbating causes your body to release several hormones, including the “happiness hormones” dopamine, oxytocin, and endorphins. Each of these hormones helps reduce your stress levels.
In fact, this study from 2005 explains how oxytocin regulates stress and reduces anxiety by lowering cortisol levels and blood pressure, which is linked to stress.
Aside from the medical explanation, masturbation is often simply a nice break away from the daily grind…
Jerk yourself to sleep
A well-known benefit of masturbation is that it can help you get to sleep.
Most of us know the feeling of lying in bed, too restless or nervous to fall asleep.
Out comes the member. You give it a good tug, joyfully blow your load, and before you know it you’re off to dreamland…
It’s again because of those happy hormones. Part of why they relieve stress and anxiety is because they make you feel more relaxed, and it’s that relaxation that can help you fall asleep.
Protect yourself with a pull
This benefit might be a bit less well-known, but especially during these times of COVID-19 it could be an important one…
A few studies looked into the possibility of masturbation to boost immune system, and the findings seem to be in favor of fapping.
This study, for example, looked at the effects of sexual arousal on lymphocyte subset circulation and cytokine production in men. The study concludes how parts of the innate immune system were in fact activated by sexual arousal and orgasm.
In other words, stimulation fired up the immune response system. As such, masturbation may potentially give your body a (short-term) immunity boost!
Another study found that people who had more sex had more immunoglobulin (IgA) in their saliva. This IgA plays an important role in your immune system.
Of course, more research needs to be done on the exact effects, but there does seem to be a positive link between manual exercise and your immune system…
Self-pleasure, for her pleasure
Whenever your partner tells you off for your moments of intimate solitary sex, tell her you’re doing it for her.
Masturbation is actually considered to help treat certain sexual problems, release sexual tension, help you feel better about yourself, and it can make you last longer.
For example, one way to try and overcome premature ejaculation is by practicing on your own not to climax too quickly. This is just one of more sexual dysfunctions that might be improved by masturbation.
So, next time she rudely interrupts you, explain how it’s all in the name of love and health.
Balls deep in benefits
As you can tell, there are loads of benefits associated with flying solo and it doesn’t stop there.
For example, some research even suggests that regular ejaculation (either via sex or self-gratification) may lower the risk of prostate cancer.
Clearly, there’s a lot of goodness to jerkin’ the gherkin, and I haven’t even mentioned the obvious one of how doing it alone is a lot safer than with a partner. No STIs or pregnancies to worry about, although I think we all agree sex is worth the risk…
But, before I let you go off to beat off, let’s have a quick look at the dark side of health effects of masturbation. Can you cause harm with a handjob? Let’s find out…
Masturbation side effects
Luckily, this list is a lot shorter than the list of benefits. Turns out, masturbation really isn’t all that bad for you.
Here are a few common facts and myths about the downside of jacking off.
Yes, there is such a thing as too much
It’s a FACT that people can develop an actual addiction to masturbation. And I’m not talking about when you were a horny teenager, tugging away twice a day.
Some people may find themselves masturbating so frequently that it starts to affect their relationships, friendships, up to every aspect of their lives.
If you suffer from such an addiction you may become less productive at school or work because you’re constantly fantasizing about your next phallic fix.
You might cancel social events or skip simple chores such as cleaning your house, all because you’re constantly thinking about masturbation.
This is a serious condition that can cause a lot of mental and physical pain, and I do advise that if you suffer from addiction to masturbation to speak to your doctor or a sex therapist.
You might fear what others think
It’s quite common for a man to feel all sorts of negative emotions either before, during or after masturbation.
You may feel ashamed, or you may feel like it’s immoral to masturbate. For example, some religions consider masturbation a sin, so you may feel like you are committing a sin every time you start spanking the stick.
You might fear what others say
The amount of MYTHS around masturbation is absolutely mortifying…
I hope that, by now, you realize just how normal and healthy it is to jerk off every now and then. However, to further ease your mind as you grab your eel, here’s a list of 5 common myths about masturbation:
- Hair loss – luckily, playing with your balls won’t make you bald
- Blindness – this myth has been studied and debunked over and over again, so don’t worry
- Erectile dysfunction (ED) – a lot of things can cause this, but there’s no evidence that wanking is one of them
- Decreased sex drive – as mentioned earlier on in this article, studies show that it might actually be the opposite
- Infertility – there’s no evidence to support this, so no worries about shooting away your swimmers every now and then, you’ll make new ones
Conclusion: you’re free to fap!
That’s it, the health effects of masturbation, as supported by science. There is so much more evidence in favor of masturbation it’s a lot to take in really.
From reducing your stress levels to helping you fall asleep after a busy day, the benefits of masturbation clearly outway the side effects.
Of course, as I mentioned, addiction to masturbation IS a real thing, so you should be mindful of not overdoing it.
That said, I think it’s clear that there’s nothing wrong with wanking away every now and then. Enjoy!