Just What the Doctor Ordered
Nine Reasons to Masturbate
Masturbation is still a taboo activity waiting to come out of the closet. The medical community, which used to deride it as unhealthy and leading to diseases and deviant behaviour, is now extolling its virtues as a normal healthy activity. Some religious communities still frown upon it, but more and more religious leaders within those communities are revising their teachings with solo sex as an acceptable activity. And many of us carry the baggage of our parents’ negative words or absence of words about the topic which have piled shame onto our solo pleasure. Popular culture is also guilty for many comments about solo sex as a less-than-worthy activity for self-respecting folks. It is time to debunk some of those messages we have picked up directly or through osmosis over the years that cloud our solo pleasure and raise it to the positive status it deserves!
1. It is natural: Masturbation is something that 95 % of men and 89 % of women report having done at least once (and many suggest that the rest are lying). Many animal species have been observed using their own body parts or other objects for solo pleasure. Children usually discover it innocently. It is a normal part of a healthy sexual life; let’s get used to it.
2. It is real sex: Some even find that it is better than partner-sex: there is no reciprocation or communication required. The body’s nerve endings respond to the pleasure in the same way as during partner-sex. When you are interested in sex and you do not have an interested or available partner in the moment, it is a great option. Several studies found that the more someone in a relationship masturbated, the more they were also likely to engage in partner-sex, not less. No need to worry about cheating: sex on your own is a gift for yourself and does not involve emotional or physical connection with another person. Many actually find that if anything, their solo play enhances their partner play.
3. Not just for singles: All kinds of people enjoy solo sex: whether partnered, single, or in an open relationship. One study found that 45% of women and 85% of men living with a partner still regularly also indulged in solo sex. So it is not something that only those without partners are relegated to. It is an equal opportunity activity!
4. Boosts your immune system, helps prevent cervical infections: Research has found that people who had partner or solo sex once or twice a week showed higher levels of Immunoglobulin A , an antibody that fights infection, than those who had sex less frequently. And arousal for women is a great way to clear out and replenish cervical mucous, decreasing infections.
5. Decreases stress levels, combats high blood pressure and lowers the risk of type-2 diabetes: We all know that sex of any kind can be a great strategy for stress relief. Solo sex is the kind of sex that offers less stress as there is little negotiation, and can take place when you are in the mood and at your own pace as long as the door is locked and privacy is guaranteed. More studies revealed that masturbation also lowers blood pressure for those who had recently pleasured themselves compared to those who had no sexual activity. And women who experience frequent orgasms have greater resistance to coronary heart disease and type-2 diabetes.
6. Combats menstrual pain, reduces chronic back pain and migraines: Many studies have noticed that orgasm can block pain of different kinds. It releases a hormone that raises the pain threshold more than double for menstrual cramps, arthritis, chronic back and leg pain. It also has proven to be an effective (and popular) antidote for 60% of people who suffer from migraines.
7. Stimulates your brain: Sex is good for the brain: it appears to grow new brain cells, so the more you do it, the sharper you’ll be! There is some evidence that older people who are sexually active, solo and/or partnered, are less likely to have dementia. Masturbate throughout your lifespan!
8. Increases pelvic floor strength for better sex and less incontinence: Pelvic floor strength is important for everyone, not just those who have given birth. Toning your pelvic floor not only results in better orgasms, but it also keeps the bladder and internal organs in place and healthy, reducing incontinence and vaginal prolapse (where the internal organs fall out of position and into the vagina). Blood flow in the pelvic region is also important for vaginal health and pleasure, especially after menopause.
9. Increases your sexual confidence and overall self-esteem: The more frequently a woman masturbates, the more positive her body image and the more likely she is to orgasm on her own or with a partner. Men with erectile challenges can also use solo pleasure as a way to learn how to maintain their erection. Of course the better you know your body, the better a lover you will become as someone who can communicate their pleasures to their partner. One study found that 90% of women who followed a masturbation program were able to learn to orgasm, and 85% of them were even able to achieve it from intercourse!
10. It feels great! Masturbation is a fabulous way to let go of the day, fall asleep, release tension, get a little exercise and do good things for your body all without a gym membership, much preparation or leaving the house. And most folks find it much more fun than a workout.
So whether it be for boosting your overall health, improving your sexual pleasure and performance or for the pure recreation and indulgence, don’t hold back on getting busy by yourself. An orgasm a day just might keep the doctor away.