Is masturbation related to higher frequencies of sexual dysfunction?

Is masturbation related to higher frequencies of sexual dysfunction?

by B.J. Lehecka, DPT, PhD | May 16, 2021

Several sexual dysfunctions have been related to excessive or abnormal masturbation practices. Reports include hypoactive sexual desire disorder (no or low sex drive), retarded ejaculation (persistent difficulty or inability to ejaculate, especially from stimulation by a partner), and ejaculatory anhedonia (ejaculation without pleasure or orgasm).

Retarded ejaculation often involves being unable to orgasm via intercourse or partner stimulation. These patients reported the need to engage in their habitual masturbation protocols (such as rubbing against a mattress or vigorous self- “milking”) to achieve an orgasm. A significant number of patients with retarded ejaculation were high-frequency masturbators (98% masturbated more than once per week on average, and over 35% at least every other day or more). In one case series, masturbation avoidance was a primary intervention for sexual dysfunctions including retarded ejaculation.

In a study of 2,786 men consulting a clinic for erectile dysfunction, urogenital problems such as varicocele (varicose veins of the scrotum) and prostate abnormalities increased with increasing masturbation frequencies. And in a study of over 11,000 adults, men and women who masturbated were more likely to report sexual dysfunctions (lasting 1 to 6 months) than those who didn’t masturbate (27% of the studied men). Dysfunctions included lacking interest in sex, performance anxiety, inability to experience orgasm, premature orgasm, erectile dysfunction in men, and trouble lubricating in women.

In another study, 50% of the 42 members who reported erectile difficulties at the outset of a masturbation abstinence attempt noted partial or complete improvements in erectile function after abstaining for a period (median abstinence duration was 36.5 days).

 

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