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Sexual Healing: Why Masturbation is Good for Your Health

Constant readjustments of all kinds are necessary when we have a neurological condition. Multiple sclerosis seems to change how our bodies work on a monthly, weekly, and even daily basis. Numbness comes and goes. Bladder and bowel dysfunction can wax and wane, affecting other bodily functions. Pain and spasticity might interfere with our walking, thinking, and pleasure. Our social lives can change drastically and sadly. Friendships and spouses are often lost. Marriages can either end or become troubled. The burdens of chronic illness feel even heavier when the added strain of social interaction piles more stress on top of stress.

Stress-relieving techniques

Stress-relieving techniques are many. Warm showers, meditation, reading, napping, and confiding your feelings to a trustworthy source are only some of them. The one I’ll focus on is a very intimate one. It doesn’t cost anything and you don’t need a companion: masturbation.

Masturbating can accomplish several things: It can be an instant stress reliever, it nurtures your sexual relationship with yourself, and it gets you in touch with a change in sensation, especially if you’ve had a flare with new permanent symptoms.

Loss of sexual desire

But perhaps you’ve been feeling kind of dead down there, with no sexual desire at all for what seems like ages. And maybe you have tried to get things going from time to time, to no avail. I get that. And I can relate. There were years when I thought I’d lost my desire permanently. I’d follow the routine that worked for me during my pre-MS life, but my body didn’t respond. Looking back, however, I know why things were that way.

Fears of rejection

During those years my libido went dormant, I was still reeling and in shock over this disease and how it changed my body, how I saw the world, and how I saw myself in it. I had my first MS attack when I was single and unattached. I’d been divorced for years and only dated sporadically. It wasn’t unusual for my sex drive to go dormant during such periods. But this was different. I could usually pleasure myself when it occurred to me to try. This time, I had a disease from which I would not recover. I was scared about my future. What seemed inevitable was the world rejecting me completely. Men rejecting me, employers turning away in indifference. Who am I now? My identity and confidence took a big hit.

The game changer

Years went by, and then I entered a serious relationship. My body was still in indifference mode. We weren’t compatible lovers, but I started to enjoy some of our sessions and could even climax once in a while. Then the game changer happened. He took me to see the new James Bond movie CASINO ROYALE, the first movie with Daniel Craig as 007. I found Craig extremely attractive, so much so that I began fantasizing — and that was the key. I realized that all those years my body was unresponsive, I had no sexual fantasy life. For me, that was the key. My libido came alive. That relationship ended. But I got my mojo back and that is no small deed.

How a session of self-love can help

I’m now divorced and just ended a three-and-a-half year relationship with another man. That last relationship was sexually as wild and satisfying as those of my youth. Alone again, I’ve got many tools and self-knowledge to have fun without a partner.

Here are some things a session of self-love can help:

  • Insomnia. An orgasm can relieve stress and help you fall asleep. It’s worked that way for me.
  • It releases endorphins. Heck, it feels good.
  • Pain relief. Oddly enough, when I have neuropathic or any other kind of pain, self-arousal gets my mind off the pain for a while.

For other insights about sexual dysfunction and what we can do about it, see my article titled: We Can Enjoy Sex Despite Having MS.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.


  • Lifeisnotfair
    9 months ago

    Kim, I can identify with everything you said and you hit it all right on the head! I haven’t felt the urge to do anything below the waist, much less even fantasize about it. I feel like that part of my life is over and I don’t even see myself as a sexual human being any more. I guess I figured that it’s just another thing that this disease takes away from us and that I should just accept it, the sooner the better before I start to miss it, too.

  • Musicang
    9 months ago

    After my first marriage that ended with my husband saying he couldn’t deal with my MS—there was a lot more to it—I educated myself. I was very young and my 1st husband was my only sexual partner. I decided I wanted to become more self aware. In the process, I managed to regain almost complete control of my bladder again and become much better (I think! Lol) in bed!

    I am now remarried and very happy! My husband is understanding and patient. He is also newly dx’d coincidentally with MS. I hope I can help him through any issues he may have.

  • Kim Dolce moderator author
    9 months ago

    Musicang, thank you for sharing your personal experience! It’s so great things are working out with your present husband. You’ll be a wonderful support system for him on his journey through MS. –Kim

  • potter
    9 months ago

    For women it improves bladder tone to masturbate. I bought a bladder electronic exercise device to help maintain it. The first time I used it I had a mild orgasm. So I did some research and found out that a orgasm is good for bladder function. I probably should do it more often but since my husband retired I am never alone. He is thinking about getting some Viagra so maybe I won’t need it anymore. Potter

  • Kim Dolce moderator author
    9 months ago

    potter, thank you for sharing that experience! I’m going to research a bladder electronic exercise device. Hope you and your husband have a good time 🙂 Kim

  • Devin Garlit moderator
    9 months ago

    Thank you for this Kim! All of it is so very true and I’m glad you said it!

  • Kim Dolce moderator author
    9 months ago

    Devin, so glad it resonated–and thank you for the acknowledgment.

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