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13 Reasons Not To Be Embarrassed About Masturbating

For some reason, there's a stigma surrounding masturbation. Maybe it's because the sex positive movement wasn't as strong while you were growing up. Maybe it's because you've been taught by society to be ashamed of your body. Maybe you were convinced that be that every time you masturbated, a kitten died. Whatever the case, there are all kinds of people who aren't comfortable admitting they masturbate. But you shouldn't be one of those people. Masturbating is healthy. Masturbating is awesome. There are tons of reasons why you shouldn't be embarrassed about masturbating.

Sex in the media has a tendency of portraying women as a way to help men feel sexual pleasure. Amy Schumer devotes an entire portion of her stand-up to how women have been taught to only enjoy sex if they're enjoying for men. Say it ain't so, sisters!

One of the key parts of sex positivity, and of simply learning about your own body, is masturbation. At it's core, masturbation is an act of self-love. And in a society that profits from your self-doubt, what's a greater way to rebel against those archaic standards of male-dominated sexuality than by loving on yourself? I'm not here to force you to masturbate. That would just be weird. I am here, however, to tell you why you shouldn't be embarrassed if and when you do partake. Because masturbation is awesome, and here's why.

1. It Can Improve Your Sex Life

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When you know your own body, you can help others learn how to please you. When you're happy, everybody's happy. Right? Right. Knowing what makes your sexual prowess tick is important in any relationship, especially your relationship with yourself.

2. It Releases Tension

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You've heard of oxytocin, right? The love hormone? That warm and fuzzy feeling you get after an orgasm isn't just your body's way of patting you on the back for a job well done. Planned Parenthood notes that it's a chemical reaction, a release of oxytocin into the blood stream that brings feelings of happiness and a state of calm.

3. It Eases Pain And Relieves Headaches

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Not only does having an orgasm release a rush of oxytocin, but Go Ask Alice notes that having an orgasm releases endorphins. These are thought to have a similar structure to morphine, but endorphins are even better, because they relieve pain and headaches the natural way.

4. It Lowers Your Levels Of Frustration

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Endorphins also help control the body's stress level, and influence your mood. Providing yourself some sexual relief not only relieves pain, but Huffington Post notes that it can help elevate your mood and release your anxiety.

5. It Helps You Gain Body Confidence

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Another added bonus to self-love is the ultimate self-love, body confidence. Your body image is incredibly important to your self-esteem, and when you're comfortable with your body, when you know how to make yourself feel good, you instantly feel sexier. That feeling grows into confidence, both inside and out.

6. It's Healthy

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Orgasms help prevent cervical infections and can relieve the pain you feel during a UTI, according to the Women's Health Network. Because the cervix contracts during orgasm, it releases trapped fluids and flushes the cervix, promotion a healthier environment in your vagina. Bonus? Yeah, I'd call that a bonus.

7. It Keeps Your Pelvic Muscles Toned

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Practice makes perfect, and practice makes... perky? The Women's Health Network notes that extended masturbation sessions can help strengthen your pelvic floor. By exercising your muscles, you'll be prepared for a number of things: Birthing preparation, incontinence-prevention, and more frequent orgasms. Hell yeah.

8. It Increases Your Libido

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If you're in a relationship and you think that you're wasting your orgasm by getting it done alone, think again. Orgasms don't happen a finite number of times. You've got plenty of orgasms in you. Masturbating can get you in the mood to play around with your partner, and can give you an extra push to get back in the sack if you're experiencing a dry spell.

9. It Helps Relieve Menstrual Cramps

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Web MD notes that masturbating can help boost blood flow and relieve tissue problems. The muscle contractions that masturbation provides can help ease your cramps and period pains.

10. It Helps You Sleep

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Orgasms relieve tension both physically and emotionally, exhausting the body, which means you fall asleep quicker. With the increase of dopamine, oxytocin, and endorphins, it's no wonder masturbating lulls you into a calm state of mind, which is perfect for falling asleep.

11. It Helps Strengthen Your Immune System

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By increasing cortisol, masturbation improves your immune system. Cortisol helps regulate your immune functions. More cortisol? Better regulation. Less colds. Better health. More masturbation for everyone.

12. It Helps You Climax More Often

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That's right, masturbating can actually help you increase how often you climax, according to Planned Parenthood. It makes sense though, right? The better you know your own body, the more practice you have with finding your happy place, the more you climax — with, or without your partner.

13. It Has Zero Health Risks

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Literally nothing bad can happen while you're masturbating. (Well, as long as you keep it fairly tame.) No risk of pregnancy, no risk of transmitting a sexual infection, no swapping of fluids that can make you sick... Yeah, masturbation is safe and sexy.