Masturbation is weird. There are a million reasons we do it, and then we do it for no reason at the same time. It’s just something we’re compelled to do, and the large majority of us have no problem giving in to that compulsion.
But what if someone asks you why you do it? What do you say? It doesn’t feel right to just say ‘I’m compelled to do it’. That’s not a satisfying answer. For some of us, the answer might be that we don’t have a highly sexual relationship. That’s a good answer. Others, because it relieves pressure. That’s good too. But we want you to be fully armed and ready with a response to the question, “why do we masturbate?”
In no particular order:
7. Psychological Benefits
Masturbation leads to a brighter mood. Simple. Now, we’re not saying it can immediately cure your depression, but it can bring relief, at least temporarily. Masturbation reduces stress and activates feel-good hormones, elevating your mood and reducing the sensation of pain and discomfort. It also promotes better restorative sleep, and allows us to regulate our sexual impulses, avoiding activity that might otherwise lead to worse psychological health.
Moreover, masturbation gives expression to fantasy and imagination and provides an outlet for urges that might otherwise lead to unhealthy behavior. In short, masturbation is excellent for your mental health.
When you reduce it to its constituent parts, masturbation is a form of mild exercise, and therefore is good for your cardiovascular fitness. Masturbation is good for your heart. Of course, the physical effects are minor, but compared with regular exercise, it is more efficient at reducing stress. During masturbation, your blood vessels relax, improving circulation, and lowering your heartrate and blood pressure. Hurrah.
5. Faster Sleep
Masturbation eases you off to sleep by releasing hormones such as dopamine, endorphins, oxytocin, and prolactin, among others. These all lead to a more easily achieved and restful sleep.
4. Improved Reproductive Health
In men, masturbation removes old sperm with slowing motility, and there are studies to indicate that it reduces the risk of prostate cancer. In women, it increases the chances of conception by stabilizing the conditions within the vagina and uterus. What’s more, it helps to flush out toxins and pathogens that can lead to infection. For everyone, it strengthens the reproductive muscles in and around the pelvic floor and genitals, and can help extend the lifespan of your sexual receptiveness.
3. Increased Intimacy
Masturbation is traditionally considered a solitary activity that encourages loneliness and is used as a substitute for sex. That’s been proved untrue, and there is a positive correlation between the frequency of masturbation and the frequency of intercourse. In other words, people who masturbate actually have more sex, not less. This leads to a deeper connection between partners, and a more fulfilling experience all round, which in turn encourages more sex and more intimacy.
Masturbation is safe, convenient and uncomplicated. It is not likely to lead to sexually transmissible infections, and should be considered no different from keeping yourself clean, since it performs that function to an extent too. There are no drawbacks, as long as you’re doing it responsibly.
There’s no need for special equipment, the complexity and psychology and politics of sex, or even a partner. Masturbation is something you can do for yourself that has only a positive impact on your wellbeing. That is, after all, why it feels good in the first place. We’re supposed to do it.