What is Masturbating?

Masturbation is the manual excitation of the sexual organs with the purpose of reaching orgasm. It may also feature the use of sex toys and non-genital stimulation, but the main purpose of masturbation is to achieve orgasm by touching one's sex organs. Although masturbation is seen primarily as a solitary practice, it may become part of the sexual life of certain people in the form of mutual masturbation.

In such cases, mutual masturbation may be used as foreplay or even replace intercourse completely from time to time. Masturbation techniques vary from person to person, depending on preferences, time available and other issues (circumcision is one of the major factors that determine the choice of masturbation techniques in men).

The techniques employed by men and women are, naturally, very different. The most common adjuncts of masturbation are reading or viewing pornographic materials and also fantasizing about things that the person in question finds stimulating. The frequency of masturbation depends largely upon the age of the person in question.

Teens and adolescents tend to masturbate very frequently, after which many move on to sexual intercourse. However, many people (mostly men) continue to masturbate well in their 20s and even beyond this age. Adult women report a drastic drop in masturbation frequency and it is believed that women are less likely to engage in frequent masturbation while in a sexual relationship with a man.