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Masturbation is a sexual act which gives pleasure to the person doing it. It is done by rubbing, stroking (caressing) or stimulating some different parts of the body - the penis, vagina, breasts or nipples and clitoris.
Purpose[edit | edit source]
The purpose of masturbation is to produce sexual pleasure and to achieve an orgasm. This is a very strong and intense sensation where muscles tense up and the heart and breathing become faster.
Masturbation also releases special chemicals in our brain, called Endorphins, which make you feel relaxed and sleepy. This may be why in teenagers and adults, it is also used sometimes to relieve stress and tension.
Methods[edit | edit source]
Masturbation can be performed in lots of different ways. Men often use their hands to retract their foreskin repeatedly, or to rub the glans until they ejaculate. Women use their hands to rub their clitoris or nipples, although some insert their fingers or specially made objects into the vagina over and over again.
Moral problems[edit | edit source]
In nature, the purpose of the genitals is primarily for reproduction, so that all animals - including humans, survive and continue to exist. Some religions believe that masturbation goes against this reason, like the catholic church. They believe it's wrong, so they teach not to do it.
Myths[edit | edit source]
Because, sometimes, moral arguments weren't enough, myths and falsehoods (things that aren't true) were invented either accidentally or deliberately, to frighten people and warn them to avoid masturbating.
A lot of myths still exist today to try and put people off masturbating. These include:
- It causes blindness.
- It makes hair grow on the palms of your hands.
- It causes you to get acne.
- It can make you get addicted to sex.
- It can cause you to become infertile.
Scientists have concluded that medically, masturbation causes no damage to the body whatsoever and that all of these myths are false.
Health[edit | edit source]
Although masturbation does not produce any physical and mental damage, there are some things you should note:
- If a person practices masturbation without conviction or guilt, this can affect him psychologically.
- Psychologists and other specialists claim that the practice of this activity allows self-discovery of the body and helps one to feel comfortable with oneself.
- The use of foreign products (things that aren't meant to be used) when performing this activity can cause irritation or pain.
- It is always necessary and healthy to maintain hygiene both in the genitals and in the rest of the body.
Whatever happens, people should try to take care of their body and mind. If they have doubts about this topic, they can try to get informed on the Internet (in places that talk about it seriously) and / or through a health professional.
Bibliography[edit | edit source]
- My body is changing , Institute for Reproductive Health, Georgetown University and Family Health International (2005). ISBN 0-939704-84-6
- Talking about sex , Marta Suplicy. ISBN 950-12-2512-7