Subtitles section Play video Print subtitles Pleasuring yourself is common with over 50% of women and 70% of men masturbating on a monthly basis. But what would happen if you just completely stopped masturbating forever? After a week, male testosterone levels go up by 40%, or at least that is what a 2003 study found, which caught worldwide media attention and in part lead to the "No Fap" community, "Fapping" being slang for masturbating. Supporters of the No Fap movement also claim improved sexual performance and high sperm quality along with feelings of improved motivation, self-esteem and happiness. But how valid are all these claims? What most media did not mention is that while the study did see increased testosterone, it went back down to normal levels on day 8 with no explanation. Other abstinence studies have found no difference at all in testosterone levels between those who masturbated and those who abstained, suggesting that other variables like changing diet and exercise, which also impact testosterone, may more likely be the cause for any changes found in people who stopped masturbating. In terms of sexual performance, abstinence from masturbation does't seem to improve premature ejaculation either. After three weeks of no masturbation, a study found that participants had roughly the same ejaculation time as those that did masturbate. And as for sperm quality, it turns out that those who ejaculated more frequently had sperm that were stronger swimmers, which improves chances of fertilization. In fact, this is one theory behind why not masturbating for extended periods of time may lead to more nocturnal admissions or wet dreams as a mechanism to cycle out old sperm. 83% of men and 37% of women have experienced a wet dream at least once. But the evidence for why is still inconclusive as there haven't been many studies, given the awkward nature of studying people orgasm in their sleep. Apart from this, for men when sperm isn't ejaculated, it can be broken down, and the nutrients are recycled back inside the body. Now masturbation addiction is a real thing, and curbing the habit can potentially impact your motivation, self-esteem, and happiness. Masturbation can increase dopamine and serotonin neurotransmitter release, which stimulates the reward pathway in the brain. The only issue is that constant masturbation leads to constant release of serotonin and dopamine, which leads to our brain becoming desensitized to these specific neurotransmitters. Our brain would then require a higher level of dopamine and serotonin to obtain normal levels of happiness and motivation. So if you stop masturbation, you then allow the brain to become sensitive to dopamine and serotonin again. But the science behind masturbation shows that it can improve sleep, reduce stress and pain, and improve your immune system along with a slew of other health benefits which we covered in another video on masturbation here. In men, it can even reduce prostate cancer risk. Of course, these studies investigated primarily the experiences of men, and currently there is a lack of evidence to suggest that polishing the pearl is anything but beneficial to women So if you want to stop masturbating for personal reasons, go for it. Some say it helped their lives. But for most, in moderation, masturbation is a healthy activity with some genuine scientific benefits. if you wanna know even more masturbation's healthy effects, we just uploaded the newest episode of our podcast side note to YouTube for the first time where we have a scientific debate about masturbation. You can click here to listen and subscribe to the new channel. We also tell very candid and personal stories about this touchy subject and then debate both sides of the issue including a discussion on porn addiction. Things get pretty heated so be sure to check it out.