In my conversations with non-Christians, and many Christians, I get the response that masturbation is not harmful. Interestingly, I came upon some secular research that discusses the potential harm masturbation brings.
Myth #1 - Frequent masturbation prevents prostate cancer
This is simply untrue. Research from Dr. Brody in the Journal of Sexual Medicine reports that heterosexual (penile-vaginal) intercourse (PVI) brings health benefits. The myth of frequent masturbation as healthy was incorrectly reported by a study of poor design, with the assumption that ejaculation, rather than how the ejaculation was produced, was the important finding. A meta-analysis of nine studies that supported this myth concluded that ejaculation frequency was related to a decrease in prostate cancer. However, a more recent study that was designed better and distinguished between the different ways an ejaculation was produced, found that PVI was actually protective of prostate health in older men and neutral in younger men. Other forms of ejaculation were not protective.
Myth #2 - Frequent masturbation benefits your sex life
A recent (2012) report from the Archives of Sexual Behavior demonstrate that greater masturbation frequency is associated with impaired sexual function, greater dissatisfaction with relationships and love for one's spouse. Greater masturbation frequency is also associated with more depressive symptoms and several other indicators of poorer physical and mental health, including greater blood pressure reactivity to stress, anxious attachment and immature psychological defense mechanisms. Dr Costa concludes, "The only sexual behavior that is consistently related to better psychological and physical health is PVI (p.539)." More research has also shown that masturbating to porn makes for less than satisfying relationships.
Myth #3 - Orgasm is orgasm
PVI releases four times the prolactin that masturbation produces. This study (2006) demonstrates PVI is more physiologically satisfying than masturbation and produces more physiological and psychological benefits than any other sexual activity. Masturbating to porn has also be found to decrease sexual satisfaction.
#4 There is no such thing as too much masturbation
Research is indicating that with the accessibility of high speed online pornography, excessive masturbation is causing problems:
- Dry ejaculation and painful climaxes
- Sores, blisters, swelling, bruising of the penis from excessive friction
- Inability to feel intercourse and/or derive pleasure from intercourse
- Loss of interest in sex and/or increase in uncharacteristic sexual activity
- Edging for hours to defer climax often because it is less pleasurable
- Addiction related symptoms: depression, social anxiety, brain fog, withdrawal symptoms, etc.
The problem today is easy access to ever-novel sexual stimuli that can override our innate sexual behavior and throw our brains into addiction. This is such a new area of research that there is a dearth of information about porn and masturbation addiction.
#5 You can't cut back on masturbation without hurting yourself
Anecdotal accounts of men slowing down their masturbation actually has had surprisingly positive effects: more awareness, more social, more optimism and feelings of more stability. Reports of an increase in seeing humor in situations, as well as feelings of calm and creativity. The ability to see women as friends instead of sexual objects also increased.
So there you have it.
Information from secular sources.
No interjection of "religion."
It certainly is apparent that God does know what is best for us.
This post is an adaptation from an article found in Psychology Today.
BE A MAN.