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In today’s fast and loose society, for some reason, we’re still kinda uptight about masturbation, one of the more harmless sexual acts. It’s literally self-love, so we’re of the school that if it feels good, do it. And today we’re patting ourselves on the back, because in addition to the pleasure aspect, it turns out it’ll do a body good, too.

We’ve heard all of the potential “bad things” masturbation can cause – everything from hairy palms to infertility to blindness – and all we can do is roll our eyes. If these things were true, then the 95 per cent of men and 72 per cent of women who’ve masturbated would make for a pretty sorry human species.

So, before you touch yourself again, take note of all of the wonderful things it does for your body:

So long, stress

Masturbating releases the neurotransmitter dopamine, which helps control the brain’s reward and pleasure centre. When triggered, dopamine helps to reduce stress. In other words, there is nothing on Earth that could distract you from how good you feel in that precise, orgasmic instance. Not to mention that wonderful afterglow. Shine on, you horny diamond of a person.

See you never, pain

Touching yourself causes your brain to release endorphins, which are those glorious little things in your brain that make you feel good. Damn good. Endorphins – the body’s natural opiates – are also released when we exercise. Wait, does masturbation count as exercise? Unfortunately, no, unless you’re a some sort of marathoner of self-love.

When those endorphins are let loose in the body, they automatically reduce your perception of pain. Ladies, this can even help with those severe menstrual cramps.

Sleep it off

Masturbation is also associated with the hormone prolactin, which, in turn, is linked with sleep. You may have noticed that, after orgasm, you’re very tired and just want to go to bed (thankfully, you’re already in there a lot of the time); this is because of the prolactin. So chances are, if you masturbate regularly, you’re more likely to catch some regular zzzs.

Some serious health cred

In men, masturbation ups the white blood cell count and could potentially ward off colds. As most of us now know, masturbating can help prevent prostate cancer by releasing potentially carcinogenic cells more often. This is just a theory, but it’s a definitive fact that men who ejaculate on the regular are less likely to develop prostate cancer.

But wait, there’s more: Self-pleasure can improve the quality of sperm by ensuring that the old “batch” is gone and replaced with new, “younger” sperm, which can actually increase the chances of conception.

Keep it “up”

We age, and as we get older, our sex organs don’t quite work the way we want them to. In men, that’s erectile dysfunction, and in women, the pelvic-floor muscles lose their strength and flexibility, which can make for an unpleasant sexual experience. Masturbation to the rescue! Yep, touching yourself is a workout for your sex muscles and helps to keep our respective organs in shape. So, you might be able to keep on getting it on right up until a ripe, old age!

We’re sure all this good news has gotten you excited. You know what to do. Don’t worry, now you know it’s good for you.