How to Stop Masturbating? Practical Tips To Overcome Masturbation

Last Updated: January 20, 2021

Authored by Nena Messina, Ph.D.

Reviewed by Michael Espelin APRN

If patients feel like they masturbate too much and do not know how to stop masturbation, here is a way out. Porn addiction and masturbation go hand in hand, and they have become a serious issue that millions of people all around the world across all ages and both sexes suffer from. A lot of people are addicted to masturbation, and they are constantly wondering how to stop masturbation as they often hate themselves after this process of too much masturbation.

The urge to masturbate is a natural one, especially in adolescence, as it signifies interest in sex before embarking on adult sexual relationships. Masturbation is a shortcut to get the natural gratification that comes with reproduction, but when it becomes an obsession or a reason for constant self-loathing, then perhaps it is time to learn how to stop masturbation addiction. Read along further to find how to stop masturbating, what are the anti-masturbation medications and therapies used to overcome this addiction, and how to seek professional help.

Is It Hard To Stop Masturbating?

Yes, it can be hard to stop masturbation addiction. Quitting masturbation is a process that requires commitment and is prone to relapse. Keeping a record and rewarding oneself for good behavior can also be a means of motivation for one to overcome addiction. According to this study about abstinence from masturbation, it is suggested that abstinence from masturbation, porn, and orgasms can help overcome masturbation addiction. According to the research’s findings, higher abstinence motivation was related to a higher perceived impact of masturbation, conservatism, and religiosity. The result also showed that men suffering from decreased genital sensitivity showed higher abstinence motivation.

Prohibition of abstinence of masturbation.

How To Stop Masturbation Addiction On Your Own?

Perhaps the most common issue with masturbation addiction, especially in married couples, is how it affects one’s relationship with the partner. They soon start to feel neglected, inadequate, and frustrated. The following addresses how to stop masturbation, and it does not focus on issues such as why people want to stop masturbating or whether or not it is healthy.

There are so many ways to confront the masturbation problem, but they are all very likely to fall under one of a few categories.

One can stop masturbation addiction in a few ways when one considers how to stop masturbating; some of these ways which have been described in this study are discussed below:

  • Stop punishing oneself. Remember that masturbation is actually a natural urge, and as human beings, people always have these sexual urges, and neither of these things makes them less of a person or any less worthy compared to anyone. Don’t allow oneself to enter into despondency as this is mostly a waste of time, and it could have been spent relinquishing oneself of the addiction. So take it a step at a time and realize that there is help; the situation is not helpless.
  • Remove the triggers that bring temptation to masturbate. Top of the list of things that brings the temptation to masturbate is pornography, so one has to rid oneself and the immediate environment of any pornographic content. Also, one should control access to this content. If one is observant enough to know the specific times and instances, one mostly gets the urge to masturbate, try to get busy with other things at those times. Some people recommend exercising as this gives a release of its own and leaves a person exhausted to do much else.
  • Reduce the alone time. If one frequently masturbates  as a result of loneliness, find ways to limit solitude. Do things that are usually done alone in the company of others and public places. Don’t lock oneself up indoors all day.
  • Find another outlet for time and energy. Fill life with engaging activities. The excitement of doing something different and meeting set goals and objectives can help replace the urge to masturbate, and there are a lot more distractions that can keep one’s mind off it. The process of turning one’s sexual urges into creative output is something that monks and sages have mastered, and it is called sublimation. This is something one can utilize on a scale that one is capable of. There are a lot of things that one can invest time and energy into, such as writing, learning to play an instrument, drawing, etc. This takes discipline and persistence, and no one ever said it was going to be easy. Research has also shown that the way one lives can either increase or decrease self-control when it comes to dealing with addictions.
  • Be persistent and patient. Stopping masturbation is not something that can be done instantly. It is a process that requires commitment, and one might fall to temptation and relapse on occasion. Don’t beat oneself up when this happens. One can also set up a reward system to reward oneself for good behavior and achievement in terms of how long one goes without masturbating. When one keeps a record of how long one has gone without masturbating, the longer the record stays, the harder it is for one to engage in activity that will ruin that record. Doing this introduces a new motivation that can help one go over the finish line. A desire to keep a record and pride in how long one has abstained will eventually overwhelm the desire to masturbate, and at this point, the battle over addiction is almost won.
  • Don’t rush the process. Stopping masturbation is not a one-time activity. One has to be patient and give themselves the required time and help that is necessary to overcome this addiction.
  • Adopt a healthy diet and lifestyle. In order to overcome any type of addiction, a healthy diet and lifestyle are very important as it makes one’s urges reduce and also provides motivation to resist.
  • Wear extra clothes at night. Wearing more clothes at night may help create a physical barrier and stop one from touching himself. It will reduce the sensation and will help curb the urge to masturbate.
  • When all else fails, seek professional help. Help can be found by enrolling in a therapeutic community and counseling. The community can take the form of support groups, online forums, and accountability partners. The research shows that professional help in this regard can go a long way in seizing this behavior and preventing it in the future.
Woman visits public art school.

Getting Professional Help For Masturbation Addiction

Masturbation addiction can be caused by several factors, which may be psychological or neurological. In some cases, people may be able to overcome it themselves, whereas, at times, some people require professional help and support to get rid of this habit. Several treatment and therapy options available include counseling, medication, and therapy, which helps users learn how to stop masturbation addiction.

These Anti-Masturbation Techniques and Treatment Options are Further Discussed Below:

Counseling and Support Groups

There are different types of professional counseling programs that cater to masturbation addiction. Usually, these incorporate holistic, emotional, and mental approaches through which patients are treated physically, spiritually, and emotionally. This helps in treating the underlying cause of the problem while enabling patients with the willpower and motivation to overcome the addiction. These counseling sessions can be in an individual or group setting. A 12-step therapeutic approach can be quite successful in this regard.

According to a recent study, Advancement in Support Groups Like: 

  • Sexaholics Anonymous (SA)
  • Sex Addicts Anonymous (SAA)
  • Sexual Compulsive Anonymous (SCA)

Or similar programs have helped to utilize the 12-step approach and spirituality to deal with the problem, which results in lower levels of compulsive sexual behavior.

Involving oneself with the right support groups can help a person enormously in overcoming his addiction. However, getting help from others can be especially difficult with masturbation addiction as there is a lot of shame that comes with it, but one has to overcome that shame if a person is serious about getting help.

Medication

Although there are no specific drugs approved by the FDA to treat compulsive sexual behaviors, several trials are being conducted which use medications such as antidepressants, mood stabilizers, antipsychotics, and antiandrogens for treatment, as shown in this study.

This Pharmacotherapy is Based on Clinical Phenomenology and Symptoms and is Further Discussed Below:

  • SSRIs are used for treating masturbation and compulsive sexual behaviors, and antidepressant medication is especially successful in patients with co-occurring psychiatric disorders.
  • An opiate antagonist, Naltrexone, has also shown promising results in treating such addictions by reducing cravings and urges.
  • Mood stabilizers such as Lithium and Valproic acid are helpful for patients who have bipolar disorder along with compulsive sexual behaviors. Topiramate and Nefazodone have also been tried.
  • Anti-androgens, such as medroxyprogesterone acetate or cyproterone acetate, also show better outcomes by lowering testosterone levels and diminishing sexual drive and urge.
Doctor writing a prescription for his patient.

Therapy

This kind of compulsive behavior and addiction responds well to different therapies and therapeutic approaches. Some of the successful therapies in this regard include the following:

Literature

Books and content written by professionals can help individuals to overcome this addiction as part of their treatment.

Some of the Prominent Books that Can be Helpful are Listed Below:

  • How to Stop Masturbating: (The Easy Way) by James Smith
  • Stop Masturbating and Start Living: How to go from fappy to happy and overcome any vice or addiction by  Joseph Fan
  • Masturbation Addiction: The Ultimate Guide for How to Overcome This Time-Consuming Addiction (Pornography Addiction, Chronic Masturbation, Sex Addiction, Obsession, Recovery) by Caesar Lincoln
  • HOW TO OVERCOME MASTURBATION: steps that work (Addiction Series Book 1) by  Dr. Frederick Jameson
  • 98 WAYS TO STOP MASTURBATING: Mindsets, Tips, and Techniques to Help You Break Your Habit of Masturbation by Marc Summers

Overcoming Masturbation Addiction

Too much masturbation, porn addiction, and compulsive sexual behaviors can interfere in individuals’ daily lives, which may affect their professional work and relationships. It is essential to stop masturbation or cut back on this habit to regain normalcy in their lives.

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Page Sources

  1. Felix Zimmer, Roland Imhoff, “Abstinence from Masturbation and Hypersexuality”, https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32130561/
  2. Muslum Kul, Hayriye Baykan & Hasan Kandemir, A Case of Excessive Masturbation Treated with Aripiprazole, https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/pdf/10.5455/bcp.20130723062916
  3. Naif Alsughier, Compulsive Masturbation Treated with Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors, https://www.longdom.org/open-access/compulsive-masturbation-treated-with-selective-serotonin-reuptake-inhibitors-Psychiatry-1000299.pdf
  4. Manju George, Shreemit Maheshwari, Suhas Chandran, Suman S Rao, Manohar J Shivanand, and T.S. Sathyanarayana Rao, “Psychosocial intervention for sexual addiction”, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5844164/
  5. James M. Cantor, Carolin Klein, Amy Lykins, Jordan E. Rullo, Lea Thaler, and Bobbi R. Walling, “A Treatment-Oriented Typology of Self-Identified Hypersexuality Referrals”, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3958916/
  6. Yaniv Efrati, and Mateusz Gola, “Compulsive sexual behavior: A twelve-step therapeutic approach”, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6174596/
  7. Timothy W. Fong, MD, “Understanding and Managing Compulsive Sexual Behaviors”, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2945841/

Published on: August 2nd, 2016

Updated on: January 20th, 2021

About Author

Nena Messina, Ph.D.

Nena Messina is a specialist in drug-related domestic violence. She devoted her life to the study of the connection between crime, mental health, and substance abuse. Apart from her work as management at addiction center, Nena regularly takes part in the educational program as a lecturer.

Medically Reviewed by

Michael Espelin APRN

8 years of nursing experience in wide variety of behavioral and addition settings that include adult inpatient and outpatient mental health services with substance use disorders, and geriatric long-term care and hospice care.  He has a particular interest in psychopharmacology, nutritional psychiatry, and alternative treatment options involving particular vitamins, dietary supplements, and administering auricular acupuncture.