How Often Do Men Masturbate? [Male Masturbation Statistics 2023]

We reveal ALL the facts and stats on how often men masturbate. We also dive deep into the benefits of male self-pleasure and whether it can replace sex.

Men masturbate. We all know it, but we never talk about it. And that’s a shame because there’s so much to talk about.

Masturbation can meet sexual needs in all kinds of situations, reduce the risk of prostate cancer, and relieve stress – and that’s just the tip of the iceberg. 

In our research, we dove into the numbers on how many men masturbate, how frequently they do it, how it affects their bodies, and much more. There are even some tips on how to take the euphoria of your self-pleasure to the next level. 

Here are some highlights from our deep dive into male pleasure:

  • Americans think that only 83% of men masturbate, but in reality, 92% of men do. 
  • Masturbation does not lower testosterone levels, except in cases of extreme excess. 
  • Nearly all men masturbate, regardless of their relationship satisfaction; it has nothing to do with their partners. 
  • Masturbation won’t raise or lower your sperm count. Your body is always producing sperm, whether you let it out or not. 
  • Men masturbate an average of 14.8 times per month. 
  • Male masturbation can help a man relax, sleep, and reduce stress.
  • On average, homosexuals masturbate over 2 times more per month than heterosexuals. 

How Experts View Male Masturbation

People will say all sorts of things about masturbation, but at the end of the day, that’s why we trust the experts. So here’s what they have to say:

Sexuality experts and researchers agree that masturbation is completely normal and healthy behavior.

The intent of masturbation is typically to achieve orgasm – the peak sexual excitement that delivers physical and emotional sensation.

Sources: Practo Care Surgeries, Web MD

The Male Sexual Response Cycle

What exactly happens to a man’s body from the moment of arousal to the post-climax tranquility? Here’s a scientific breakdown of the process:

These are the steps that take place in a man’s body during sexual response:

Sexual Response
Before arousal
The penis is limp/flaccid.
During arousal
Blood flows into erectile tissue, and the penis expands and hardens.
Testes swell, and the scrotum tightens to the body.
Sensitivity is heightened.
The penis is hard and fully erect.
Lubricating fluid (pre-ejaculate) is released from the tip of the penis.
Orgasm and ejaculation
Physical stimulation of the penis can lead to orgasm – a series of contractions of the muscles at the base of the penis.
Ejaculation occurs – sperm and fluid are released from the urethra.
Blood flows away from the penis, and erection subsides.
Penis softens, and testes retract to normal position.
Refractory (resting) period occurs – meaning the penis cannot achieve another orgasm. This period may last from a couple of minutes to several hours.

Source: Body Talk

Male Masturbation Statistics

Masturbation statistics can vary, as they often rely on self-reporting. That being said, here are some of the more prominent statistics on the general state of male masturbation: 

Americans think that only 83% of men masturbate, but in reality, 92% of men do.

Only 53% of Americans think that sex toys are useful for men, but 80% of men who have used sex toys say that they improve the masturbation experience. 

Around a quarter of men aged 18 to 59 masturbate a few times per month to weekly:

About 20%
Masturbated 2 to 3 times per week.
Under 20%
Masturbated more than 4 times a week.

Older men were more likely to report no masturbation in the past year.

For men ages 25 to 29 who masturbate:

Had not masturbated in the past year.
Masturbate a few times per year to monthly.
Masturbate a few times per month to weekly.
Masturbate 2 to 3 times per week.
Masturbate more than 4 times per week.

Men masturbate an average of 4 times a week for an average duration of 14 minutes.

Sources: PR Newswire, International Society for Sexual Medicine, FiveThirtyEight, Online Doctor

How Many Men Masturbate?

Almost all men masturbate, and that’s just counting those willing to admit it on a survey. Here’s a breakdown of masturbation by age:

When asked, “Have you ever masturbated?” these percentages of men said yes:

14 to 15 years
16 to 17 years
18 to 19 years
20 to 24 years
25 to 29 years
30 to 39 years
40 to 49 years
50 to 59 years
60 to 69 years
70+ years

When asked, “How often do you masturbate?” the following percentages of men reported the following frequencies:

2 to 3 times per week:

18 to 24 years
25 to 29 years
30 to 39 years
40 to 49 years
50 to 59 years
60 to 69 years
70+ years

More than 4 times per week:

18 to 24 years
25 to 29 years
30 to 39 years
40 to 49 years
50 to 59 years
60 to 69 years
70+ years

Source: FiveThirtyEight

How Often Do American Men Masturbate?

A LOT. Almost 15 times per month, to be specific. These data points also show an analysis of how many people fantasize about which things, how they enjoy porn, whether or not they use toys, and more. 

Take a look at the numbers:

The average frequency of masturbation per month:

14.8 times per month
7.8 per month
12 times per month
14.3 times per month

Here’s a list of common American sexual fantasies and the percentages of people who report masturbating to them:

Sexual Fantasies
Ex romantic partners
Only romantic partner
Missed connections
Teachers/Authoritative figures

Americans view masturbation in different ways, both as they grow up and after reaching climax. Here’s a breakdown:

Americans’ perceptions of masturbation while growing up:

It was shameful
It was healthy and/or natural
Neutral/ no strong perception
That it was bad or sinful
Something that only adults do
It was gross
Didn’t know what it was

How Americans feel after masturbating:

Relaxed and ready to sleep
In a better mood/feeling good
Guity or ashamed
Still wanting more

During masturbation, some people use sex toys, and some don’t. Here are the numbers:

Uses Sex Toy
Never uses sex toys while masturbating
Less than 25% of the time
About 75% of the time
About half of the time
About 25% of the time
Every time

The following percentages of Americans admit to doing these things while masturbating:

Americans Doing Things While Masturbating
Texting or sexting
Being on a phone call
Being on a video call
Watching or interacting with a “camgirl” or “camguy”

Everyone enjoys porn differently, and these stats show how: 

1 in 4 people
People watch porn every time they masturbate.
1.8x more likely
Men watch porn every time they masturbate.
2.2x more likely
Virgins primarily watch solo performer porn. 
Homosexuals primarily watch straight porn while masturbating.
Women never watch porn.
Men that never watch porn.
1.3x more likely
Singles watch porn every time they masturbate. 

Source: Bespoke Surgical

Do Married Men Masturbate?

Yes, but it’s not because they aren’t sexually satisfied. These data points explain why married men still take time to pleasure themselves:

Nearly all men masturbate, whether they’re single or in a relationship. It doesn’t matter if their relationship is great or awful; engaging in masturbation has nothing to do with their partners.

Masturbation does increase as sexual activity decreases. 60% of men who’ve had sex recently still report high rates of masturbation, but 79% of those who haven’t had recent sex or are sexually discontent report high rates.

Sources: Web MD, Archives of Sexual Behavior

Can Masturbation Replace Sex for Men?

Masturbation can be useful for men who are between sexual partners or whose partners can’t be with them physically for whatever reason. 

While it doesn’t make sex obsolete, it can fill the void for a time. 

At times, masturbation can be a legitimate replacement for sex. For example:

  • If your partner has a lower sex drive, masturbation can help balance out your own. 
  • If your partner is sick
  • If your partner is pregnant
  • If your partner is not available (long-distance, travel, etc.)

Source: Practo Care Surgeries

Male Masturbation and Prostate Cancer Risk

Simply put, pleasuring oneself early often helps prevent prostate cancer in men. Here’s the science to prove it:

Having 21 or more orgasms per month can decrease a man’s risk of prostate cancer by 33%.

Men who ejaculated over five times per week in their 20s were a third less likely to develop aggressive prostate cancer.

Sources: European Urology, British Journal of Urology International

How Can Men Maximize Pleasure During Masturbation?

For men, masturbation isn’t usually seen as an emotional or explorative self-pleasure experience. 

And for that, we’re missing out. These tips can help make your solo session more meaningful, heighten stimulation, increase sensitivity, and intensify your orgasms. 

Here are a few ways that men can make masturbation even better:

Set the Mood
Turn down the lights
Play your favorite erotic video
Slowly tease yourself
Stay relaxed and present at the moment
Switch Positions
Break from your norm. If you’re standing, try leaning with your hips pushed out. If you’re lying down, try sitting in bed or on a chair. A solo session can even feel euphoric on all fours. 
Switch Hands
Changing hands can cause different sensations that can intensify your orgasm. Likewise, using your non-dominant hand can widen the pleasure zone.
Move Your Hips
Try moving your hips in a circular or back-and-forth motion – or even in a different way that feels best to you. Increasing the spread as you approach climax can electrify the experience. 
Try Different Strokes
Try using long twisting strokes from base to tip. You can also palm and pull the head of your penis while using a full-hand grip. A little rubbing and a classic three-finger grip are other ways to increase stimulation. 
Don’t Forget the Prostate!
It can seem intimidating at first but start by gently rubbing the inside and outside of your anus, then gradually insert your finger and massage. As pleasure builds, increase the speed and motion until climax.
Try Edging
Stroke your penis right to the edge of ejaculation, then stop completely. Slowly begin masturbating again, then pull back right before the finish line. Repeat as much as you like. 
Add in a Toy or Two, such as
An automatic stroker
Pocket strokers
Prostate stimulators

Source: Healthline

Is It Healthy to Hold in Semen?

When it comes to sexual satisfaction, every person is unique. Some men can’t wait to ejaculate, and others can’t stand to do it. 

Whatever your thing happens to be, it’s important to separate science from pleasure. Semen retention might feel good, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s doing anything for you. Take a look at these data points to see why:

Semen retention is the sexual practice of avoiding ejaculation

  • Some people abstain from sexual activity completely, while others find ways to orgasm without ejaculating – also known as a dry orgasm.

Semen retention is not medically-recognized as a practice

  • Sperm production is consistent regardless of sexual activity. Men typically release excess semen in their sleep through nocturnal emissions.

Sources: Mind Body Green, Tower Urology

Benefits of Masturbation

A good self-love session can help you relax and make you feel, well, good

Here’s what the research has to say about the benefits of masturbation:

Several studies show that self-pleasure provides mental, social, and physical health benefits:

  • Masturbation is a healthy sexual outlet for people who abstain from sex or do not currently have sexual partners. 
  • It can provide a safer alternative to sex, helping prevent pregnancies and sexually transmitted infections. 
  • Masturbation can help people relax and sleep.
  • It helps an individual become comfortable and familiar with their body. 
  • It can reduce stress.
  • It’s a healthy source of pleasurable sexual arousal. 

Source: Sutter Health

FAQs About Male Masturbation

All right, here’s where we cover the most frequently asked questions about male masturbation. If you heard or read something somewhere that made you terrified to masturbate, it’s most likely an unfounded rumor. 

With that in mind, here are some masturbation FAQs: 

Can masturbation cause premature ejaculation?

Excessive masturbation may cause nerve damage, leading to premature ejaculation or ejaculation during sleep. 

Can masturbation affect your sperm count?

Your body is always producing sperm, and masturbation does not change that.

After ejaculation, it does take time to be able to ejaculate again. This is completely normal and doesn’t mean your sperm count is depleted.

Can masturbation make you thin?

Technically, it is a form of exercise, but it’s not significant. At most, excessive masturbation can cause very little weight loss. 

Will masturbation lower a man’s testosterone level?

No. Research shows that masturbation only has a small effect on circulating testosterone. However, moderation is important. Excessive masturbation will definitely lower testosterone.

Source: Practo Care Surgeries


Male masturbation is a healthy and natural way to relieve stress, let sexual tension loose, and simply relax with a bit of pleasure. Nearly everyone in the world does it, regardless of race, religion, creed, or relationship status. 

While it’s widely regarded as taboo or embarrassing, it shouldn’t be. Masturbation is one of the few ways a man can truly connect with himself and his body, tend to his own desires, and explore pleasures without outside pressure. 

As with any habit, there are risks from excess and addictive behavior. That’s why it’s so critical for men to have this conversation. Opening up about masturbation can both identify risky behaviors and teach new ways to nurture and strengthen a man’s connection to his body and sexuality.

Dainis Graveris

Dainis Graveris

Over last 4 years Dainis have helped millions of people through his advice on this site (200+ guides and 1M+ visits/monthly). His work & advice has appeared on sites like: Healthline, Vice, Cosmopolitan, Men's Health, WomensHealthMag, MindBodyGreen & more. Read More

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