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Does Masturbation Cause Low Sperm Count Azoospermia?

| 29 May 2023 | 841 Views |

Does Masturbation cause low sperm count?

It’s a question that has hung like an albatross around the necks of men worldwide. It’s about time we put this vexing question to bed. Who better to help than the experts at the India IVF Fertility Clinic in Delhi?

The Impact of Masturbation on Male Fertility

Now, onto the million-dollar question: Does masturbation cause azoospermia? Well, let’s cut to the chase. The answer is a resounding No. Contrary to many popular myths and misbeliefs, masturbation is a normal and healthy sexual activity that does not cause low sperm count or nil sperm count (azoospermia).

Believe it or not, masturbation might even have health benefits, like reducing stress and promoting healthy sexual relationships. The idea that it leads to infertility is a myth that’s as stubborn as a mule, but it’s time to let that old chestnut go.

Impact of Masturbation on Sperm Count, Quality, and Volume

Folks often raise eyebrows when discussing the potential impact of masturbation on sperm parameters. But, before we dive into the nitty-gritty, let’s make something crystal clear: masturbation is a natural, normal part of human sexuality. It does not directly cause low sperm count (oligospermia), poor sperm quality, or azoospermia.

That said, excessive masturbation may lead to temporary changes in sperm parameters due to the body’s reproductive system’s natural functioning.

Let’s break it down:

1. Sperm Count

FMasturbation frequency can affect sperm count, but only in the short term. Research has shown that when men ejaculate frequently, the number of sperm in the ejaculate can decrease.

However, this is not due to the body “running out” of sperm. Instead, frequent ejaculation may not give the body enough time to fully replenish the sperm stores between ejaculations, leading to a temporary decrease in the sperm count in the ejaculate.

This effect is temporary, and sperm count returns to normal levels after a short period of abstinence.

2. Sperm Quality

Sperm quality, on the other hand, may improve with more frequent ejaculation.
Sperm are vulnerable to damage over time, which can reduce their quality. By ejaculating frequently, men can potentially “flush out” older, lower-quality sperm and replace them with newer, higher-quality sperm. Thus, while frequent ejaculation may temporarily reduce sperm count, it might also improve sperm quality.

3. Semen Volume

As for semen volume, it is expected to decrease slightly with frequent ejaculation due to the shorter time available for the body to produce seminal fluid. However, this reduction is usually minimal and does not have a significant effect on fertility.

Here’s a brief overview table summarising the impact of frequent masturbation on sperm parameters:

Parameter Impact of Frequent Masturbation
Sperm Count May temporarily decrease with frequent ejaculation
Sperm Quality Potential improvement due to ‘flushing out’ older, less viable sperm
Semen Volume Slight decrease with frequent ejaculation due to shorter production time

Remember, this only applies to excessive and frequent masturbation. Moderate and regular masturbation does not harm sperm count, quality, or semen volume.


Masturbation: A Primer and its Effect on Male Fertility

Masturbation is the sexual stimulation of one’s genitals for sexual pleasure, often leading to orgasm. This self-stimulation is a common behaviour seen in humans and other animals, and it’s typically considered a healthy sexual behaviour.

Defining Normal, Excessive, Moderate, and Regular Masturbation

Let’s differentiate between these often-confused terms:

  • Normal Masturbation: There’s no one-size-fits-all definition for normal masturbation. It’s highly individual and depends on personal comfort, sexual needs, and lifestyle.
  • Excessive Masturbation: This implies masturbating multiple times a day, often to a point where it interferes with daily life, work, responsibilities, or relationships.
  • Moderate Masturbation: Refers to a balanced masturbation frequency that doesn’t interfere with daily life but fulfils sexual needs.
  • Regular Masturbation: This suggests consistent masturbation over time, regardless of the frequency.

Each person’s masturbation habits may vary widely and can still be considered normal.

Effect of Masturbation on Testosterone Levels and Testes Size

Masturbation and testosterone levels are subjects of many myths. While some suggest that masturbation or ejaculation might lower testosterone levels, research has shown that this is not the case. In fact, sexual arousal and masturbation can briefly boost testosterone levels, but they return to normal after ejaculation.

As for the testes size, masturbation does not affect their size. The size of the testes is determined genetically and by overall health, not by sexual activity.

Impact of Masturbation on Male Fertility

As discussed earlier, masturbation – when done in moderation – does not have a negative impact on male fertility. On the contrary, regular ejaculation helps maintain healthy sperm. However, excessive masturbation might temporarily reduce sperm count in the ejaculate due to a shorter time for sperm production, but it does not lead to long-term fertility issues.

Importantly, while masturbation itself does not affect fertility, the accompanying behaviours can. For instance, excessive masturbation accompanied by a sedentary lifestyle and poor diet can harm overall health and, by extension, fertility.

In a nutshell, while it’s essential to maintain a healthy lifestyle for good fertility, there’s no need to worry that normal or moderate masturbation could cause fertility problems.


In this day and age, misinformation spreads faster than wildfire. Myths surrounding masturbation and fertility have been around for aeons, yet it’s high time we debunk them. Remember, when it comes to health issues, always take the bull by the horns. Consultation with specialists, like our team at India IVF Fertility Clinic, can provide personalised advice and treatment options. Your fertility journey may seem like a long and winding road, but with the right guidance, you’re never alone.

And remember, while this blog serves to inform and educate, it cannot and should not replace a one-on-one consultation with a medical professional. If you have any concerns about azoospermia or fertility, reach out to our team at India IVF Fertility Clinic. Don’t let myths dictate your health and happiness!


While frequent masturbation can temporarily reduce sperm count in the ejaculate, it does not lead to a long-term decrease in sperm production. The body continually produces sperm, and any temporary decrease in sperm count due to frequent ejaculation usually recovers after a short period of abstinence.

No, excessive masturbation does not cause infertility. However, it might temporarily decrease the sperm count in the ejaculate if done several times a day. Despite this, sperm count usually returns to normal after a brief period of abstinence.

Studies suggest that ejaculating every 2 to 3 days can help maintain healthy sperm. However, this can vary from person to person, and individual needs should be considered.

Masturbation and ejaculation do not significantly impact your overall testosterone levels. While sexual arousal and masturbation can temporarily increase testosterone levels, they return to normal after ejaculation.

Frequent ejaculation, which includes masturbation, can potentially improve sperm quality. It helps 'flush out' older sperm from the body and replace them with fresher, more viable ones. Therefore, moderate masturbation can contribute positively to sperm health.

The method of masturbation generally does not impact sperm health. However, overly aggressive or vigorous masturbation could potentially cause temporary physical injury, but typically it does not affect fertility.

No, masturbation cannot cause sexual dysfunction. On the contrary, regular masturbation can help you understand your body better, improve sexual stamina, and enhance your overall sexual health.

Frequent masturbation may lead to a slight decrease in semen volume as there is less time for the body to produce seminal fluid between ejaculations. However, this change is usually minimal and does not affect overall fertility.

Yes, in fact, for certain fertility treatments such as in-vitro fertilization (IVF), masturbation is the most common way for men to provide sperm samples.

Some studies suggest that regular ejaculation, either through masturbation or sexual intercourse, may help maintain prostate health. However, more research is needed in this area to draw definite conclusions.

About The Author
Dr. Richika Sahay

MBBS (Gold Medalist), DNB (Obst & Gyne), MNAMS, MRCOG (London-UK), Fellow IVF, Fellow MAS, Infertility (IVF) Specialist & Gynae Laparoscopic surgeon,[Ex AIIMS & Sir Gangaram Hospital, New Delhi]. Read more

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