Masturbation is a healthy sexual behavior that anyone can practice. It is defined as the act of touching oneself to any part of the body, including the sexual organs, in order to obtain pleasure. Added to the above, it allows drawing a personal sexual map and thus guiding the couple.
However, masturbation remains taboo in many cultures due to its sexual charge. Regardless of the prejudices that still weigh on masturbation, it is natural to feel the desire to do so, particularly because of the neurochemical cocktail – which includes, among others, oxytocin, prolactin, serotonin or dopamine – which triggers a complete sexual cycle in both men and women.
“It is certainly a healthy factor. It has undoubted short-term benefits, but then they are also seen in the long term. It is a reinforcer, a heart-healthy activity and it also exerts an anxiolytic effect”, explains Jesús Rodríguez, director of the Murcian Sexological Institute.
In men it has been shown that ejaculations make the prostate work as a gland, which benefits its good tone in the long term, reports the specialized medium Healthline. In addition, the ejaculatory process prevents certain types of prostate infections and some types of cancer.
In women, sexual health is impacted by masturbation due to the orgasmic impulse that favors vaginal maintenance, which is reflected in the mucous membranes, tissues, and pelvic floor. It is added to the increase in blood flow and can promote tone and control. “A healthy woman at the genital level is a woman who also enjoys that orgasmic response,” says the sexologist Rodríguez.
Masturbation addiction? It may not be so
In the sphere of the intimate and taking into account the particularity of each body, there is no “normal” frequency. But there are some signs that would allow you to identify if it is becoming a problem.
This is the list proposed by Fernando Rosero Mera, a Clinical Sexologist from the University of Barcelona, Spain. Expert in the diagnosis and treatment of sexual difficulties and dysfunctions:
– The need to masturbate uncontrollably, for example; perform it in inappropriate situations or contexts, such as public places, work, class or in front of other people, etc.
– Impossibility of spending a long time without resorting to masturbation.
– Appearance of lesions in the genital area: irritation, swelling, inflammation, redness, frenulum lesions, and discomfort in the hands and wrists.
Masturbation has no detrimental physical or emotional effects. In fact, it has a number of benefits for physical and mental health, including relieving stress, helping you feel good about your body, and even relieving period cramps. In addition, it is the safest sex that exists: there is no risk of getting pregnant or contracting an STD.
Does it affect fertility?
Patricio C. Gargollo, M.D. of Mayo Clinic that this is unlikely. “According to certain data, the optimal semen quality is obtained after two or three days without ejaculation. However, other research suggests that men who have sperm of normal quality retain normal sperm motility and concentrations, even when they ejaculate daily,” they comment in Clinic. Also, the sperm has only 74 days to live, regardless of whether it is expelled or not.
Although the frequency of masturbation can increase in old age, as studies on the subject have shown, there are other people for whom the act of self-pleasure plummets over the years.