A new survey from adult product peddler AdamandEve.com reveals that 27 percent of Americans admit to masturbating once or twice a week.
That number seems suspiciously low to us, especially since science has shown that being master of your domain can provide additional feel-great benefits. (Also because the people surveyed were browsing an adult toy website.) “Masturbation is part of a healthy sex life,” says Gloria Brame, Ph.D., a clinical sexologist. “It’s totally safe and harmless. It’s healthier than brushing your teeth every day.”
And just as brushing your teeth should be a regular occurrence, so too should be cleaning your pipes. Here are 5 reasons to take matters into your own hands right now. (You’re welcome.)
It prevents cancer. A 2003 Australian study found that men who ejaculated more than five times a week were a third less likely to developprostate cancer. Disease-causing toxins build up in your urogenital tract and when you rub one out, you flush the bad guys out of your system, says Brame.
It makes you harder. As you age, you naturally lose muscle tone … even down there. Regular sex or masturbation works out your pelvic floor muscles to prevent erectile dysfunction and incontinence. “It keeps the angle of your dangle perky,” says Brame. Aim to (ahem) arrive 3 to 5 times a week for rock-solid results.
It helps you last longer. Taking yourself to palm prom may help you stretch your sack sessions. “[Masturbating] an hour before a date will give you more control,” says Brame. Train yourself by timing how long it takes you to orgasm, suggests Ava Cadell, Ph.D., founder of loveologyuniversity.com. If it usually takes two minutes solo, try for three next time. Or count how many strokes you need to get to your happy place. If you’re spurting after 50, shoot for 60. “Most men can double the number of strokes and the time within one month,” Cadell says. Practice makes perfect, right?
It ups your immunity. Ejaculation increases levels of the hormone cortisol, says Jennifer Landa, M.D., a specialist in hormone therapy. Cortisol, which usually gets a bad rap as a havoc-wrecking stress hormone, actually helps regulate and maintain your immunity in the small doses. “Masturbation can product the right environment for a strengthened immune system,” she says.
It boosts your mood. Masturbating releases a slew of feel-good neurochemicals like dopamine and oxytocin that lift your spirits, boost your satisfaction, and activate the reward circuits in your brain. “An orgasm is the biggest non-drug blast of dopamine available,” says Brame. “A brain scan of someone having an orgasm looks like a heroin addict’s.”