BetterHealth writes about Masturbation:

Some of the general health benefits of masturbation may include that it: [...] enhances self-esteem.

2KnowMyself writes in Why masturbation lowers your self esteem and causes depression:

Based on these thoughts some people came up with the conclusion that masturbation won't affect you if you didn't believe that its wrong, but science proved those people wrong.

With disregard to your beliefs about masturbation or internet porn they will both work on changing the structure of your brain, lowering your self esteem and even bringing you depression!

Is it true that the habit of masturbation increases self-esteem or does it lower it?

  • 2
    Anecdotal evidence: I don't think it increases my self-esteem. But that may not apply to everyone the same. Religion definitely plays a role here. – John Dvorak Oct 24 '15 at 13:02
  • I think masturbation without material, or with pornographic material can have different impacts. Maybe the question should be more specific. Could also depend on the frequency. – Einenlum Oct 24 '15 at 16:42
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    @Einenlum : Most of the sources I found when writing the question do make the general claim. If the answer is different for different ways to masturbate, I'm happy if the answer to the question explores those differences. – Christian Oct 24 '15 at 16:54
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    I have studied sexuality research for decades, and never heard a claim in either direction. There is, however, good support for masturbation preventing depression due to increased levels of serotonin and oxytocin in the brain, so at least the "even bringing you depression" part of the 2KnowMyself claim is dangerously wrong (orgasms have very significant health benefits, and promoting abstinence is promoting behavior damaging to health). – otakucode Nov 2 '15 at 12:28
  • Another case of: "If it really made a difference, we would know by now." – user29285 Mar 22 '16 at 23:42

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