We asked an expert all the questions you have about masturbation

Really NSFW

We recently asked a sexpert the most common sex questions everyone has but would never dare ask, so we decided why not do the same with masturbation? Especially because as sex talk goes it’s still one of the slightly more touchier subjects (pun intended).

According to a recent study by TENGA, over half of the 2,000 Brits polled still feel that talking about masturbation is taboo. But isn’t it time we embraced getting to know our own bodies and preferences? After all, your relationship with yourself is the longest one you’re ever going to be in.

In fact, Pornhub recently revealed that more women than ever before looked at porn in 2017. And given that less than a fifth of women are satisfied with their sex life and that half the population of the UK owns a sex toy, we can’t say we’re too shocked by these latest stats.

So, we asked the experts at Clue the most common masturbation questions you may have.

Can you get an STI from masturbating?

‘Unless you’re using unwashed hands or an unsanitary object, masturbation cannot cause disease or infection,’ Clue reports. Masturbating also can’t lead to ‘unintended pregnancy or sexually transmitted infections (provided that the environment and objects are clean).

That being said, if you’re masturbating with a partner and you’re touching each others genitals then there is a risk of transmitting some STIs (such as HPV, genital warts, chlamydia, herpes and syphilis).

Can you lose your virginity by masturbating?

In short, no. ‘Virginity is not something physical or medical. It’s a cultural idea, which many people have different definitions of and opinions about,’ states Clue. ‘Concepts of virginity are sometimes linked with the idea that your vaginal opening is covered by a membrane that is “broken” by vaginal sex.’

Inserting things (from tampons and menstrual cups to sex toys) into the vagina will gradually wear down ths membrane (also known as the hymen), and puberty has also been known to change the shape and flexibility of this. So, regardless of whether you masturbate or not this will wear away over time.

Can masturbation make you infertile?

Masturbating won’t make you infertile, nor will it cause acne or make hair grow on your palms (other common questions).

In fact, masturbation is actually pretty good for your health. ‘Arousal and orgasm (from sex or masturbation) can help maintain your circulatory, neural and muscular systems, and prevent dysmenorrhoea,’ says Clue. ‘Masturbation has even been associated with improved body image,’ so the perks are endless.

Can masturbation help you learn how to orgasm?

Masturbation is a great way to get to know your own body, and what you do and don’t like. So, yes.

Is it ok to masturbate if you’re in a relationship?

A recent survey revealed that 85% of people in relationships said they were comfortable with their other half masturbating, because it’s a natural thing to do.

Some may worry that if their partner is indulging in a little 1 on 1 time they may not be sexually satisfied in the relationship, but the most common reason people masturbate is to achieve sexual pleasure when alone. So it’s really nothing to worry about.

Interestingly, under 35s often use masturbation as a sex-positive tool to explore their own desires and feel more comfortable in their own body, which will benefit any relationship.

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