Does Masturbation Decrease Testosterone in Men?

Does Masturbation Decrease Testosterone in Men?

There are plenty of misconceptions and mistruths about what masturbation does to the male body. It's easy to get confused about the real impact of masturbation. 

A common saying is that masturbation has negative effects, like reducing testosterone levels in men, even affecting levels depending on the amount and frequency of masturbation sessions. Testosterone is a vital hormone that: 

  • Keeps bones and muscles strong
  • Determines where body hair and fat are on the body
  • Produces sperm
  • Maintains sex drive and controlled erections
  • Helps create red blood cells
  • Boosts mood and energy levels

Loss of this hormone would be potentially devastating, and claiming masturbation affects it is a serious allegation. 

In this article, we will review the truths regarding masturbation's effects on male hormones, including testosterone. Everyone deserves to jack off, knowing what it's doing to their bodies.

Does Masturbation Decrease Testosterone? 

So, do masturbation and ejaculation actually decrease vital levels of testosterone in the male body? In general, the answer is no.

It may impact levels in a super minor way in the short term, but it doesn't have any long-term effects on T-levels. It also doesn't really help increase testosterone levels either, so if that's the goal, masturbation is not the way to achieve it. Similarly, sexual abstinence and abstaining from masturbation is not a proven method of increasing testosterone long term. 

However, many men often feel that their testosterone levels have dropped after masturbation, even though this isn't accurate. The reason for these feelings lies in the other hormones that flood the brain after coitus and masturbation-induced orgasm. 

The following hormones are often released after and during orgasm: 

  • Dopamine: This hormone is like a happy drug for your brain, involved with reward-seeking behaviors. 
  • Oxytocin: This hormone is often released during sexual, social, and parental behaviors, often associated with feelings of love and affection. 
  • Serotonin: This neurotransmitter helps to maintain levels of satisfaction and a general good mood. 
  • Endorphins: These chemicals flood the brain and reduce pain and discomfort. They are associated with the pleasurable high people get after working out and general sexual arousal. 

These hormones create a relaxed, at-ease sensation that feels very different from a testosterone boost. Unlike mood changes, irritability, and aggression associated with high testosterone levels, the hormones that are released during masturbation invoke a steady feeling of joy and peace. 

These real effects of masturbation and sexual desire trick adult males into believing they've had a dip in baseline testosterone concentrations.  

What Does Cause a Decline in Testosterone?

While masturbation doesn't cause a serious reduction in testosterone, other factors can affect this powerful hormone. Generally, aging is the primary and most common cause of low T. It's normal and completely natural for this hormone to slowly decline in aging men. However, this doesn't normally start until after 40, and the process is very gradual, usually unnoticeable. 

If you're concerned about a sudden drop in testosterone, there may be a more serious issue at play, and you should contact a medical professional. One of the following conditions could be the cause: 

  • Thyroid issues: This gland is a vital producer of testosterone and, when damaged, will fail to properly regulate any number of hormones. 
  • Certain medications: Medications like opioids and steroids are infamous for affecting testosterone levels, having severe effects on daily life. 
  • Inflammatory diseases: Many of these diseases can affect the pituitary gland and the hypothalamus, which both help control testosterone production. 
  • Injury to the testes: If both testes are severely injured at the same time, then your testosterone levels can be immediately and seriously diminished. 
  • Cancer treatment: Treatment of many cancers and other serious diseases can cause lowered testosterone levels, among many other complications. A medical professional can help mitigate some of these effects.

There are many other possible causes of lower testosterone. None of which include masturbation. A normal endocrine response to masturbation in healthy men will only improve your well-being. 

There are solutions to the real causes of low T-levels, such as testosterone replacement therapy, other endocrinology treatments, and even supplements. 

The Symptoms of Low Testosterone Levels

While masturbation doesn't impact your testosterone levels, low levels can affect your sex drive, cause erectile dysfunction, etc. If you're concerned about low levels of testosterone, these are the symptoms to look out for:

  • Low sex drive: Libido levels are different for every person. However, if you notice a sudden and persistent change in your sex drive, it could be a result of lower testosterone levels that are affecting your sex life. 
  • Erectile dysfunction: This condition makes it challenging to maintain an erection sufficient for any sexual activity, including masturbation. There are many possible causes of erectile dysfunction, but low sex hormones are a common cause. 
  • Low sperm count: You likely won't be able to tell that you have a lower sperm count until contacting a medical professional, typically for fertility treatment. Consistent, healthy levels of testosterone encourage healthy sperm levels. 
  • Sleep problems such as insomnia: Most hormone imbalances can result in insomnia. When your testosterone is out of whack, almost every area of your life can be affected. 
  • Decrease in muscle size and strength: If you're working out consistently and notice a lack of muscle mass or even a reduction in strength, you could be facing a testosterone issue. 
  • Bone loss: Bone loss is a serious medical issue that can be caused and exasperated by diminished testosterone levels.
  • Hair loss: Many healthcare experts identify testosterone as the male sex hormone that may predominantly cause hair loss.  
  • Increase in body fat: Body fat can increase for a variety of reasons. Before blaming hormone levels, consider any recent changes in diet, activity, or stress. Once you rule out lifestyle changes, testosterone levels could be the culprit. 
  • Depression: Mental illness is a complex and challenging sickness to identify and treat. There may be a chance that your recent mental health struggles are hormone related. 
  • Trouble concentrating: When your testosterone levels are off, your brain isn't primed to focus and maintain attention in an efficient manner. 

If you notice any symptoms of low testosterone, don't worry that your masturbation habits are related. Instead, reach out to a professional for medical advice to find the actual cause of your symptoms. 

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Masturbation is a fun, fulfilling activity that has no permanent effect on your masturbation levels or sexual function. A positive masturbation session can trigger happy hormones and powerful receptors, giving you a euphoric sensation. Proper masturbation is a key aspect of sexual health and overall men's health. 

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