Masturbation is a natural behavior where people self-stimulate their genitals to achieve orgasm. This sexual act is common among all the genders and ages of people. Masturbation becomes an important topic to be discussed as it allows individuals to understand their bodies rightly.
The stigma that once was attached to this topic has now been removed as people are becoming more vocal about masturbation and the psychology behind it gaining more people’s attention.
But the question here arises why do people masturbate, what are its benefits and how does it leads to make impact our mental health? Is there any harm if one masturbates too much?
In this article, we will shed light on the psychology behind masturbation and how it impacts individuals and society as well.
How Does Masturbation Affect Our Physical Health?
Masturbation has proven beneficial for people in many ways. It does not cause any harm to our bodies instead, it allows us to understand ourselves. Masturbation possesses several benefits to our physical health.
- Improvement in sleep quality,
- Increase concentration power
- Uplift the mood
- Provides relief for menstrual cramps
- The feeling of pleasure
Also Read: The Psychology of Mental Masturbation
Apart from these, During masturbation, our body releases hormones that make us happy and have positive effects on our health.
The hormones include dopamine, serotonin, endomorphin, oxytocin, and prolactin. These hormones create a reward system for your brain and provide overall satisfaction. Since it allows us to understand our needs and sexual pleasures, it makes us aware of possible sexually transmitted diseases, and unplanned pregnancies. Regular masturbation helps to reduce sexual transmission infections and reducing the number of partners can help to decrease the chances of various STIs.
The Psychological Impact of Masturbation?
It can reduce stress and anxiety and helps to boost one’s self-esteem. This way people accept themselves, and their body image and increase happiness. It could be a great way to reduce your anxiety levels. During masturbation, our body releases certain hormones, like oxytocin and endomorphin. These hormones release all the worrying thoughts and can reduce your tension and stress.
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Rewards play an important role in human life. At many points in life, people crave rewards. For example, if a child behaves nicely throughout the week, he gets chocolates as a reward. Rewards encourage positive behavior in people. Masturbation is also a natural thing, but the presence of rewards can enhance it. By stimulating the genitals, one can feel the sensations and the hormones releasing that further give intense orgasm. These sensations provide relief that is developed as rewards later. Through these rewards, people can get a feeling of self-confidence.
We have a prenotion about masturbation that it provides a feeling of self-satisfaction but that is not the case always as it can become a source of boredom for some people. Many become bored of this activity and start showing their disinterest in it and their avoidance of it. There are many reasons why we develop boredom in the self-satisfaction activity. One of the reasons could be our brain getting used to dopamine. Since every time masturbation takes place, the happiness hormones get released and our mind is designed in such a way that it gets curious during any new activity but repetition of it can lead to boredom.
This boredom can have adverse effects on our mental and physical well-being. People might think that they are unable to fulfill their own desires which can develop negative self-talk, and can engage in self-harm activities like alcohol, drug abuse, or even injury.
As we enter adolescence, many teenagers start seeing the primary and secondary changes in their bodies. It is natural for them to feel curious about their bodies. Then sexual curiosity plays a significant role. But what is sexual curiosity? Sexual curiosity is knowing about your own body, and pleasures and the best way for people to experience the pleasures. This sexual curiosity becomes more important when it comes to masturbation as we are aware of the fact that this is a self-pleasuring activity We can only attain the pleasures when we are aware of ourselves if we have explored ourselves. By knowing your body rightly, one can find techniques that work best for them to achieve orgasm. Individuals should also be aware that sexual curiosity has no age. People of any age can still discover themselves without any hesitation.
Also Read: Indian Culture-Bound Syndrome
Impact on mental health
While masturbation has good effects on our mental and physical well-being. But on the other side, it also has some impacts on mental health.
Feeling Of Guilt/Shame:
Masturbation can lead to feelings of guilt and shame in people due to many reasons. In many sections of society, masturbation is still a taboo, something that makes people impure or a wrongdoing. There is a stigma attached to self-pleasure. As self-pleasure is termed as dirty in many people’s eyes. This guilt and shame also come due to a number of spiritual, and cultural factors, as masturbation is considered a sinful act. The chances of developing anxiety, self-worth-related issues, and stress also increase.
In many cases, people also refuse to talk about it as they feel that this can affect their overall image in society. As a result, this avoidance of sex education topic can severely affect teenagers who are going toward their adulthood.
Addiction in Some Cases:
Masturbation is a perfectly normal, beneficiary process, but when it becomes an addiction, this can develop several psychological conditions. When this activity takes place in a healthy way, then it has a number of pros for our body, but when it becomes compulsive it can interfere with your daily life activities. The addiction to masturbation has a severe impact on your relationships as it can take you away from your partner or start neglecting their feelings. Therefore, it is important to address the issue and ask for help as it will allow you to get rid of the addiction of this habit and provide a healthier life.