Many of us have likely heard the old wives’ tale that masturbation will make you blind and result in hairy palms (particularly among men). Despite what your parents might have told you, I am sorry to report that research on solo sexual activity actually indicates that masturbation can result in a variety of HEALTHY and BENEFICIAL outcomes. So, before you go purchase a chastity belt or other variety of restraining device for your “extremely active solo artist” in order to save them from vision impairment and abnormal hair growth, check out the following benefits associated with masturbation.
Although not all occurrences of masturbation result in orgasm, many do. Consequently, research on the benefits of orgasm reveals that the physiological byproduct of orgasms is the release of endorphins into the body, which can help to reduce stress, relieve sexual tension, reduce the likelihood of prostate cancer in men, and improve issues associated with insomnia (Haake et al., 2004; Rao, Aswinidutt, Anil, Dhananjaya, & Hasan, 2009). In fact, there are some studies that have indicated the masturbatory orgasms can help reduce nasal congestion (Zarrintan, 2008) – sorry Kleenex and Puffs!
However, not all benefits of masturbation are linked to orgasm. In fact, just the experience of sexual arousal can be beneficial. Research suggests that stress/tension reduction can result from sexual arousal ALONE (regardless of orgasm; Murphy, 1987).
KEEP IN MIND – there can be too much of a good thing. In fact, is rare cases some people’s masturbation habits may create distress or result in interpersonal distress with a partner. That being said, for the vast majority, masturbation is associated with much more positives than negatives. So forget what your grandma told you, there is nothing wrong with masturbation if it is done so in a mature manner.