Very few people would argue that masturbation is a pleasurable act, but all too often, this emotional and physical release leads to addiction. Masturbation addiction can cause serious disruptions in several aspects of your life, including your relationship, family, work and social interactions. The first step in getting help for a masturbation addiction is in understanding how masturbation can become an addiction. Once you understand this powerful addiction, it is possible to break free of it.
Nearly everyone engages in masturbation at some point in life. It is common for people to masturbate even though they may have several unanswered questions about the process and about how the body responds to it. Some frequently asked questions about masturbation include the following:
• Is masturbation healthy?
• Is masturbation morally acceptable?
• How often can I masturbate?
• If I cannot masturbate, how else can I relieve stress?
• Is it okay to masturbate when my partner is not in the mood for sex?
The answers to these questions are left for each individual to decide, but people who come to the same conclusions often fall down the same path of addiction. When trying to answer such questions, it is important to realize that masturbation is more than fantasy. Masturbation activates the same nerve centers in your body that are activated by actual sex.
Masturbation and Neurochemical Release
Your brain responds to masturbation in the same way that it responds to sex. The brain releases massive amounts of powerful neurochemicals that cause you to experience sensations of pleasure. These neurochemicals and the sensations they cause are the same as the ones triggered by illicit drugs. No one argues about the addictive qualities of cocaine and other dangerous drugs, but very few people understand that masturbation is often used in the same way and for the same reasons.
Many people who are afraid of using psychoactive drugs turn to masturbation as a type of self-medication or an escape from stress, loneliness and boredom. Just like drugs, masturbation can soon turn into a crutch, and you can start to believe that you need it just to get through the day.
An orgasm is one of the most powerful and pleasurable experiences you can have. Because of this, the brain begins to associate whatever you are doing at the time of orgasm with the orgasm itself. The link between masturbation and orgasm becomes highly reinforced very quickly, and addiction begins without you even realizing it.
Fortunately, masturbation addiction can be overcome. It takes some guidance and willpower, but many people have escaped masturbation addiction and have proceeded to lead healthy, productive lives.