Masturbation Statistics & Facts [Research]

Masturbation is a natural and healthy part of human sexuality, yet it remains a taboo topic in many cultures. Despite this, research on the topic has increased in recent years, shedding light on the prevalence and patterns of masturbation across different populations. In this statistical piece, we will examine the latest research on masturbation, including statistics and facts on frequency, gender differences, age trends, and the potential benefits and drawbacks of this common sexual behavior.

Here’s what you can find in this report:

Key Takeaways

  • 84% of Americans have masturbated compared to 91.5% of Danes and 93% of Spains
  • 34% have masturbated in the office at work
  • 17 years old is the average age to start masturbating (The world average is 17 years and 3 months)
  • Men masturbate 46 hours a year
  • Women masturbate 27 hours a year
  • 6 out of 10 masturbate twice a week
  • 6% masturbates over 30 min
  • 45.6% use 10 min. or less per masturbation session.
  • Masturbation makes you; more confident, sleep better, and experience less stress
  • The top places to masturbate are 1) the Bathroom, 2) the Bedroom, and 3) the couch.
  • The risk of getting prostate cancer decreases significantly when you as a man masturbate

How common is masturbation?

  • 84% of Americans reported having masturbated before, and the survey, conducted in 2018, found that 91.5% of Danes had masturbated before.
  • Spain came out as the winner with a whopping 93% of respondents having masturbated before. Surely that’s a better title than the Eurovision contest winner! The USA also ranked highly, coming in 4th place with 84%.
  • 34% have masturbated in the office at work (See our masturbation at work survey)
  • Average age to start masturbating:
Average age to start masturbating

What is the masturbation gap?

  • Statistics show that in general more men tend to masturbate and men tend to masturbate more often. This difference is called the masturbation gap. We found the international masturbation gap to be 68% and 60% in the USA.
  • This gender gap has up over the years. Superdrug calculated that men masturbate for an average of 46 hours per year whereas women only clocked up an average of 27 hours.

    We say it’s high time to close that gap!
Sexus masturbation gap

What other masturbation gaps exist?

  • Differences in masturbation frequency don’t only exist in the gender divide. Bespoke Surgical’s survey of 1040 Americans showed singles had five more solo self-pleasure sessions per month than those in a relationship and gay/and or lesbian people had 2.3 more sessions than heterosexuals.
  • Similarly, we’ve found that LGBTQIA+ respondents related more benefits to masturbation and masturbated more frequently than non-LGBTQIA+ respondents.
Benefits of masturbation

How often do people masturbate?

  • We’ve found that 59.2% of respondents masturbated twice a week and 19.54% twice a month.
How often do people masturbate?

How long is the average masturbation session?

  • The majority of US respondents to the survey keep it short and sweet with solo sessions under 10 minutes. Only 6% of respondents reported masturbating for over 30 minutes. We’ll take that as a sign we’re good at getting ourselves off!
Length of masturbation

Masturbation habits

  • It turns out we are creatures of habit and masturbation is no exception!

    While we love a good routine, it can also be fun to switch it up. Variety is the spice of life after all!
Masturbation habits

Attitudes about masturbation

  • We found that 53% of people have been made to feel shame related to masturbating, and 47% of people in the survey felt that discussing masturbation caused them to feel guilty. This signals we’ve still got some way to go in smashing those self-pleasure stigmas.
  • On the upside, we found that 73% agree that more open discourse around sex and masturbation would be good for society and 74% want to get rid of the taboos and stigma attached to masturbation. Something we are 100% behind!
Masturbation attitudes self care

Reasons to fall in love with masturbation

Now you know who’s doing what and how they are doing it, we thought we’d finish off with some of the benefits of masturbation, not only in May but all year round!

1) Stress relief

As well as being a great way to get out of your head and reconnect with yourself, masturbating increases levels of dopamine and oxytocin, which are related to feeling good, and lowers the stress hormone cortisol.

2) Sleep aid

As well as relaxation-promoting endorphins, the post-orgasm release of prolactin is thought to promote sleep. Making masturbation a regular nighttime ritual can also create an association that tells your brain and body that it’s time for sleep.

3) Self-Image

Showing yourself some love and learning what you like is also a great way to build a better relationship with yourself and boost your self-image.

4) Confidence boost

Use that post-orgasmic glow to boost your confidence before a job interview, presentation, or exam. Less risky and more fun than the traditional Dutch courage!

5) Pain relief

The endorphins released from masturbation are also effective pain relief and can be a great way to take the edge off a headache, or muscle aches, or reduce period cramps.

6) Exploring your pleasure

Masturbation gives you the perfect context to explore new sensations and experiences without feeling self-conscious. This can be the perfect time to explore that fantasy that’s been at the back of your mind.

7) Better sex with a partner

When you know what you like and how you like it, you are better equipped to guide your partner in how to touch you, resulting in more satisfying sex.

8) Getting over a mental block

If you are feeling stuck or have a bout of creative block, take a masturbation break to help switch up your thinking.

Find more information on whether masturbation is healthy or not and the recommended number of times you should masturbate here.