Even though men tend to joke and mock each other about masturbation, you shouldn’t be surprised to know women too engage in masturbation in an effort to self-pleasure themselves. It isn’t uncommon to find women comparing notes secretly with close friends on the best and most effective vibrators in the market, or the stress relief that one gets from masturbating. The following are 5 things you will be surprised to discover about masturbation.
1. There is no ‘normal’ masturbation in women, it assumes different forms
According to research, just like men, women too tend to masturbate frequently and on average, every woman masturbates at least once in their lifetime. As is therefore expected, the frequency of masturbation will vary, so there is no ‘normal’ masturbation in women, which assumes different forms. Equally, there is no cutoff age for masturbation, as women can masturbate even in their sunset years. Unlike men, women tend to feel guilty after the act, particularly if they are in a committed relationship. However, sex experts’ advice that there is no need to have any guilt feelings because women too deserve the sexual pleasure, especially when the partner is out of town, tired or even unavailable during that time of sexual desire.
According to Paul Joannides, a psychoanalyst based in Waldport, Ore, there is no one way in which women masturbate, but they use fingers and vibrators more commonly than any other method. According to a survey that was led by Debby Herbenick, PhD, MPH, an associate director of the Centre for Sexual Health Promotion which is based in the Indiana University, in Bloomington, out of 2,056 women aged between 18 and 60, over half of them preferred to use a vibrator when masturbating or during sexual intercourse.
Other common items used for masturbating include the handle of a ‘sizable’ hairbrush, the back of a toothbrush head that vibrates, a water jet in the bathtub, or a banana, reports Joannides. With that being said, there are concerns that continuous use of vibrator could have some adverse side effects, such as pain or numbness in the genitalia. However, according to the Herbenick’s survey, less than 30% of women who participated cited the side effects; the others were OK with vibrators. Frank Sommers, MD, a psychiatrists based in Toronto is however quick to point out that the excessive use of vibrators for masturbation could make women irresponsive to orgasm when engaging in an actual sexual activity with a partner. Sommers explain that the vibrator tends to orient the autonomic nervous system to a level of stimulation that no human being could duplicate.
2. Masturbation and mood
According to Kathleen Segraves, PhD, sex therapist, associate professor of psychiatry at the Case Western Reserve University, and a therapist based at Metrohealth Medical Centre that is located in Cleveland, Ohio, minus the ‘moral obligation of partnered sex, women who masturbate tend to have high spirits as masturbation has been proven to improve a disheartened low mood.
Kathleen says that during a solo sexual activity, there really is no distraction hence a woman can be able to focus on maximum sexual satisfaction as there is no one else who you are ‘morally obligated’ to ensure they are also enjoying sex.
3. Improves you and your partner’s sex life
Segraves goes ahead to explain that women who have a habit of masturbating regularly will eventually learn what works and what doesn’t work for them as individuals. As a result, it helps build their sexual confidence so they can be able to guide the sexual partners on how and where they want it done. Herbenick also seconds this point saying masturbation makes women have better sexual functioning when engaging in an actual sexual activity with a real partner.
It is no wonder sex therapists will always recommend masturbation for women who experience difficulties in reaching orgasm. This is because masturbation is believed to help women learn about their anatomy, their body, and more importantly, they will feel less self-conscious when in the real act.
4. Masturbation helps in relaxation
According to some researchers, women tend to over-analyze a situation more than men… they tend to replay an argument over and over in their heads, meaning they are more stressed than men. According to medical researchers, this is known as rumination, which could result to depression. Some good news though from the experts, if a woman could start to pleasure herself, the process will interfere with ruminations and eventually make a woman relaxed, says Segraves. She is however quick to point out that this could not happen all the time, but at least in some cases it could help a great deal.
5. Masturbating for pain relief
Women who masturbate on a regular basis have reported getting relief from painful menstrual cramps, and getting their PMS symptoms such as crankiness and irritability, improved significantly. Actually, if you masturbate to orgasm, you could clear off migraine related to menses.