In addition to being a stress reliever, masturbation can also educate you on your preferences, your unique pleasure zones and the various strokes, pressures, sensations and masturbation techniques that you'll enjoy the most. Regardless of whether you engage in mutual masturbation with a partner or simply on your own, engaging in sexual self-pleasure is an activity that's highly recommended by countless sex experts, considering how it can make you more comfortable and tuned-in to your own sexuality, and if you're in one, the sexual aspect of your romantic relationship. As sex and relationship therapist Courtney Geter explains, "Masturbation is healthy in a number of ways. For the self, masturbation is a way to explore your body and sexual interests without the pressure of needing to 'perform' or please another person. This allows one to then share with a partner what sexually satisfies them, which can then improve communication and satisfaction in the relationship. When a partner is absent, masturbation also allows one to continue fulfilling sexual needs and desires.
Most men and women continue to masturbate either alone or together when they are in a relationship or married, and many find it an enjoyable part of their relationship. One study found that women who masturbated had happier marriages compared to those who did not masturbate. Masturbation side effects Masturbation is harmless. Some people may experience chafing or tender skin if they are too rough, but this will usually heal in a few days. If men frequently masturbate within a short space of time, they may experience a slight swelling of the penis called an edema.
The messages we receive about this self-touch influences whether our masturbation shifts into a private activity or a secret, shameful one. If masturbation is normalized and named a private activity — like cleaning our bodies — we are less likely to develop unhealthy shame around this kind of self-touch. The bad news? There can actually be some pretty serious risks to your physical and emotional health when it comes to masturbation, specifically if frequent masturbation may be turning into chronic or compulsive masturbation. The truth is, there are many ways your body responds to this frequent feel-good motion, and not all of the reactions are positive.
Masturbation is a common activity. It occurs among people of all backgrounds, genders, and races. Despite the myths, there are actually no physically harmful side effects of masturbation.