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#293919 - 07/02/09 12:24 PM 5 Things about Masturbation- WebMD
Ken Singer, LCSW Offline

Registered: 08/24/00
Posts: 5781
Loc: Lyons, CO USA

Masturbation: 5 Things You Didn't Know
Experts talk about whether masturbation is safe, normal, or can lead to sexual dysfunction.

By David Freeman
WebMD Feature

Reviewed by Louise Chang, MD

Experts say that just about every man who can masturbate does -- and why not? You don't need an expert to tell you that solo sex feels good, relieves stress, and is a terrific sleep aid. But here are five things you may not know about masturbation:

1. There's no such thing as "abnormal" masturbation.
Men often wonder if there's something abnormal about the way they masturbate. But experts are loath to offer specific definitions of "normal" and "abnormal," pointing out that men show great variations in both frequency and technique. "We humans are too diverse to establish a norm," says Betty Dodson, PhD, a New York City-based sexologist and the author of Sex for One. Every man masturbates in his own way, says Martha Cornog, the author of The Big Book of Masturbation, whether he "uses his hands, rubs against something, uses a sex toy or household object, wears special clothing, fantasizes, looks at a book or magazine, tries different positions, or looks in a mirror."

2. Masturbation is very safe -- but not entirely safe.
Unlike sex with a partner, masturbation can't give you a sexually transmitted disease. Nor will it subject you to the muscle strains, pokes in the eye, and awkward moments that can come with partner sex. But masturbation safety isn't guaranteed. "Masturbation is just about the safest sex there is," says Cornog. "But the laws of physics and biology don't stop operating just because someone is masturbating."

Frequent or overly vigorous masturbation can irritate the skin of the penis, as the average guy knows all too well. Less well known is that habitually masturbating face down -- for example, by thrusting against a sheet, pillow, or even a carpeted floor -- can injure the urethra in such a way that urine exits the penis not in a stream but in a hard-to-control spray. Barbara Bartlik, MD, a psychiatrist and sex therapist in New York City, says she's seen facedown masturbators with urethral trauma so severe that they are no longer able to use a urinal and must urinate while seated.

In certain extremely rare instances, masturbation and partner sex alike can cause penile fracture. This painful condition -- actually a tear in the tunica albuginea, the whitish tissue surrounding the penis's spongy layers -- occurs when an erect penis strikes a hard object or is forced downward. A medical emergency, it often necessitates surgery.

3. Solo sex can supercharge your sex life -- or scuttle it.
For various reasons, solo sex can be a real boon to sex with a partner. It helps teach men about their own sexual response -- what feels good to them and what doesn't -- so they will be better able to explain to their partners just how they like to be touched. It helps men learn to recognize the "moment of inevitability" just before orgasm and helps teach them how to avoid premature ejaculation. Perhaps most significant, it's a great coping mechanism for any man whose partner is temporarily unavailable for sex -- because of absence or illness -- or has a sex drive that doesn't quite match his own (something sex therapists call a disparity in frequency preference).

Of course, some men become so obsessed with solo sex that they begin to lose interest in having sex with their partner. The resulting hurt feelings and alienation a partner feels can make it hard to sustain the relationship. But experts are quick to point out that masturbation is perfectly OK even for men in a committed relationship. "We cannot assume that just because a man masturbates that there is a problem with his primary relationship," says Bartlik.

4. Certain forms of masturbation can lead to sexual dysfunction.
Experts warn that men who frequently stimulate themselves in ways that don't simulate sex with a partner -- for example, stroking very rapidly or with great pressure or friction -- can develop retarded ejaculation. That's a type of sexual dysfunction in which it is difficult or even impossible to climax during partnered sex. "Any man experiencing any sexual dysfunction should ask himself if he's masturbating in ways that produce sensations that differ from those he gets from his partner's hand, mouth, or vagina," says Michael A. Perelman, PhD, clinical associate professor of psychiatry, reproductive medicine, and urology at Weill Cornell Medical College in New York City and the president of the Society for Sex Therapy and Research "Then he should consider what he could say to her to make the stimulation more similar -- and how he could change the way he masturbates to make it feel more similar to what his partner does."

5. Masturbation may affect the risk for prostate cancer.
The relationship between masturbation and prostate cancer is a bit hazy.

A 2003 Australian study published in BJU International linked frequent ejaculation early in life with reduced risk for prostate cancer later on. But in a 2004 study published in The Journal of the American Medical Association, a researcher reported that "ejaculation frequency is not related to increased risk of prostate cancer." In both these studies, ejaculation frequency included sexual intercourse and masturbation.

In a study published this past January in BJU International, researchers found that frequent masturbation in young men raised the risk for prostate cancer but that frequent masturbation in older men lowered the risk. Sexual intercourse did not affect prostate cancer risk.

The researchers theorize that it may not be the masturbation itself which is increasing risk of prostate cancer in men who masturbate frequently in their 20s and 30s. Men who masturbate more may do so because they have high levels of male sex hormones -- and young men genetically predisposed to have hormone-sensitive prostate cancer will be at higher risk if they have more male hormones. In men over age 50, the researchers theorize, frequent masturbation helps drain the prostate of fluids that may contain cancer-causing substances.

SOURCES: Barbara Bartlik, MD, assistant professor of psychiatry, Weill Cornell Medical College, New York City.
Martha Cornog, author, The Big Book of Masturbation.
Betty Dodson, PhD, sex therapist; author, Sex for One.
Michael A. Perelman, PhD, professor of psychiatry, reproductive medicine, and urology, Weill Cornell Medical College, New York City; president, The Society for Sex Therapy and Research, Washington, D.C.
Dimitropoulou, P. BJU International, January 2009; vol 103: pp 178-185.
Leitzmann, M. The Journal of the American Medical Association, April 7, 2004; vol 291: pp 1578-1586.
Giles, G. BJU International, August 2003; vol 92: pp 211-216.
Ul-Muqim, R. Pakistan Journal of Medical Sciences, January-March 2006; vol 22: pp 23-27.
WebMD Health News: "Masturbation and Prostate Cancer Risk."
Reviewed on April 14, 2009 © 2009 WebMD, LLC. All rights reserved.

Last Editorial Review: 5/18/2009

Blissfully retired after 35 years treating sexual abuse

#294030 - 07/03/09 08:00 AM Re: 5 Things about Masturbation- WebMD [Re: Ken Singer, LCSW]
LilacLouie Offline

Registered: 07/02/09
Posts: 377
Loc: Utah
Pardon me, but I'd rather choke my chicken than bang some chick.
I've had women before. If God made woman as a companion for man, then all I can say is either that man is really hard up or God has a really demented sense of humor.



#294055 - 07/03/09 03:16 PM Re: 5 Things about Masturbation- WebMD [Re: LilacLouie]
myboyhoodfears Offline

Registered: 03/13/09
Posts: 457

Edited by myboyhoodfears (08/31/09 04:15 PM)
Post Nubilia Pheobus

#294072 - 07/03/09 06:11 PM Re: 5 Things about Masturbation- WebMD [Re: myboyhoodfears]
Sans Logos Offline

Registered: 05/31/03
Posts: 5796
Loc: in my own world in pittsburgh,...
this discussion sounds so roman catholic.

the assumption seems to be that anytime a penis enters a vagina that it is for creative intentions and purposes. i highly doubt that myself. a man 'banging' a vagina can certainly be doing it as an act of masturbation, and not be giving one iota of concern for whether that sperm reaches 'home' or not, and whether the species is propagated or not. people only think about pregnancy when they either are praying for it as an outcome[for purely selfish reasons] or whether they are praying against it as an outcome [for purely selfish reasons].

for myself, i have 'banged' a couple in my day, but i will be completely honest with you and say, as a former participant in a sacramental marriage, at the moment of orgasm, i didn't care whether anything lived or died including myself, because i was so enwrapt in the pleasure, my entire being became the orgasm, in spite of the fact that i planned to have my children. [it was the only way i could make it through 'the act']. i know, that seems contradictory....... but

yea, we can theorize that something beyond us is duping us into the allure of sex for the purpose of propagation, but really when you're releasing, you don't really care, and neither does the female, because if the mind could engage, there would be far less people on the planet. sometimes we want propagations, and others, definitely NOT!

one of the biggest and most told lies: 'i promise....i'll pull out' LO----f'nin--L

and what about women and masturbation? i used to think they didn't do it, but i realized later that the reason i thought that way was because i didn't want to imaging that anything resembling my mother, the symbol of all holy purity and therefore the epitome of the avoidance of all things sexual, would ever think of enjoying the pleasure of an 'o'.

we really need to put a condone on the concept that sex is for one thing only..... that's my unadulterated opinion. laugh


Ron Schulz, MSPC, NCC

#294077 - 07/03/09 06:24 PM Re: 5 Things about Masturbation- WebMD [Re: Sans Logos]
Charlie24 Offline

Registered: 09/28/08
Posts: 562
I used to be so ashamed and always felt guilty about masturbation. I think that is part of a result of my abuse. I remember kids in middle school and high school used to always joke about masturbation, I was so ashamed that I did it. Didn't want to tell people I did, they used to make fun of me about it.

Now I know it's pretty common and acceptable, and even healthy activity to do.

For me it works as a stress reliever during the school semesters.

Hope that isn't TMI.

Part of why I enjoy masturbation is as stated above, I won't get an STD from it and it's a healthy way to explore yourself, learn what you like.

With the rampant STD epidemic sweeping our nation I just don't feel like sleeping around, don't feel like picking anything up. I think that is what holds me back from sexual relations.

Now I can crack jokes about masturbation and myself. Kinda funny, that I can be open and laugh at myself.

I think it's a big step in my recovery.

Great topic by the way. Glad I could share.


Edited by Charlie24 (07/03/09 08:27 PM)

#294086 - 07/03/09 07:17 PM Re: 5 Things about Masturbation- WebMD [Re: Sans Logos]
myboyhoodfears Offline

Registered: 03/13/09
Posts: 457

Edited by myboyhoodfears (08/31/09 04:14 PM)
Post Nubilia Pheobus

#294092 - 07/03/09 08:05 PM Re: 5 Things about Masturbation- WebMD [Re: myboyhoodfears]
Trucker51 Offline

Registered: 05/21/08
Posts: 2826
Loc: Denver, CO
Another positive effect of frequent orgasm is that it helps keep your cholesterol level down, and your heart gets a workout too!!!

I used to wonder whether masturbation was the real "fountain of youth"???

"We stay here, we die here. We've got to keep moving". Trucker Mark

#294094 - 07/03/09 08:11 PM Re: 5 Things about Masturbation- WebMD [Re: myboyhoodfears]
joelRT Offline

Registered: 09/11/08
Posts: 1357
Loc: Québec, Canada
Originally Posted By: myboyhoodfears
isn't masturbation, in essence, mimicking the "mechanical" act of vaginal intercourse anyway?
Now, I'm not sure if this statement leaves us Queers in a safe place or just totally discounted.

I can assure you that my fist is not seeking to simulate a vagina...

My Story 1
My Story 2
The longest journey we take is to self-discovery

#294096 - 07/03/09 08:17 PM . [Re: Trucker51]
bardo213 Offline

Registered: 11/21/07
Posts: 812

Edited by bardo213 (06/21/13 11:42 PM)

#294108 - 07/03/09 09:18 PM Re: 5 Things about Masturbation- WebMD [Re: joelRT]
myboyhoodfears Offline

Registered: 03/13/09
Posts: 457
Now, I'm not sure if this statement leaves us Queers in a safe place or just totally discounted.

im not sure there is anything wrong with gay indivuals wanting kids, seems i know many who want children and have them,...the desire to procreate appears to be there...regardless of ones actual attractions.

though you many not be directly trying to simulate a vagina in your mind, while you masterbate...what you are thinking about is irrelevant to the mechanics of the act itself, the penis requires stimulation to reach orgasm so that the ejaculate reaches its goal..the can put your sperm in a petri dish with an egg,..and they are going after it and will fertilize that egg...and no amount of sexual attractions you have toward males is going to change that are still "biologically" heterosexual, because you are born with a penis and all the associated physical structures to make procreation possible...but its not a moral judgment not saying there is anything wrong with being gay or that just because your biological function is inconsistent with your sexual attractions there is something wrong with you, is what it is...its a purely biological fact of life...dont turn it into a crime...accept it...its a wonderful beautiful thing...the whole one is saying that you "have to" think about least I'm not.

Post Nubilia Pheobus

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