NowPatient Blog
Does masturbation cause hair loss?

Does masturbation cause hair loss?

The link between masturbation and hair loss isn’t a new one. People have been spreading this false claim for years, but it’s no truer now than it was back then. The moral of this story? Don’t believe everything you read online.

To set the record straight we’ve decided to debunk this myth and several others. In this guide we’ll give you the truth about masturbation, male pattern baldness, alopecia and hair thinning.

Can testosterone from masturbating cause hair loss?

Every man produces the hormone testosterone. It’s the hormone responsible for muscle mass and libido. That’s important because one of the biggest myths about masturbation and hair loss involves testosterone. According to non-experts, testosterone increases when you masturbate. The reason they say this is because testosterone produces a sex hormone called dihydrotestosterone (DHT). Like testosterone, DHT gives men their male characteristics, including chest and back hair. But ironically while DHT promotes body hair growth, it can cause male baldness when it binds to the hair follicle receptors in your scalp.

The link between testosterone and DHT is 100% true, but the claim that masturbating increases testosterone production is not. Medical experts have proven this time and time again and their observations are backed by a major study. The findings show that adult males who abstained from masturbation for three weeks produced more testosterone than those that didn’t.

Essentially, you can masturbate freely without worrying about your hair receding, thinning or going.

Can masturbation cause hair loss through lost proteins?

The answer is a categorical no. Yes, your hair follicles are made up of protein. And yes, semen contains protein as well, but the amount you lose through masturbating is so minimal that it’s not worth talking about.

To put this into perspective, there’s about 26 grams of protein in a handful of peanuts and 5.4 grams of protein in 100 ml of semen. Most men will only really ejaculate 3.7 ml of semen at a time, so straight away you can see how tenuous the link between masturbation and protein is. Get enough in your diet and you’ll have no issues.

And what about prolactin and masturbation?

Prolactin is another hormone that’s wrapped up in DIY science. Like many hormones the role of prolactin is to regulate varying parts of the body. When you ejaculate the level of prolactin in your body increases slightly. Some people have drawn a loose link between this prolactin increase and hair loss. However just like with protein the increase in prolactin from ejaculating is so small that you can forget about it being a reason for any hair loss you’re experiencing.

High levels of prolactin can be caused by a tumor in your pituitary gland and this can result in hair loss as well as thyroid problems.

Three common masturbation and hair loss questions answered

1. Will DHT from masturbating make my hair fall out?

No, when it comes to dihydrotestosterone and masturbation you have nothing to worry about. Studies have shown that abstaining from masturbation actually causes testosterone to go up, which produces DHT. Either way you’re fine. If you’re experiencing male pattern baldness and DHT is the cause it’s likely because your scalp is more sensitive due to hereditary reasons.

2. Will masturbating reduce my protein levels?

Being deficient in protein can contribute to hair loss; however per gram there’s more protein in eggs, poultry, dairy, legumes and many other foods than a ml of semen. If you have specific dietary requirements and are worried about your protein intake there are plenty of supplements and protein shakes out there.

3. Should I stop masturbating because of prolactin?

Don’t get drawn in by the soft science around prolactin. Yes, it’s a known fact that hormonal imbalances are a contributor to hair loss, but there are problems with this line of thinking. Yes, a small amount of prolactin is released after masturbation or after you have sex, but the amount is so tiny that it wouldn’t contribute to hair loss. There are people who do produce too much prolactin, but this is often because of a tumor in the pituitary gland.

What treatments are available to hair loss sufferers?

Most people masturbate and you shouldn’t stop because you’ve read that masturbation causes hair loss. Often the cause is hereditary, but a poor diet, a vitamin deficiency, stress, hormonal imbalances and thyroid issues can also be the hidden culprit. If you’re concerned about any of these or if you believe your hair loss is still unexplained your first point of call should be your doctor. They can conduct blood or semen tests to rule out any concerns.

If your hair is receding and you know the cause is hereditary, it will be comforting to know that there are effective treatment options available. The prescription medication we provide is finasteride, which is also sold under the brand name Propecia. Finasteride has been medically proven to slow down the process of balding in the majority of men. We also offer minoxidil (Rogaine), a topical treatment that is applied directly to the scalp to help re-grow hair.


Medical Disclaimer

NowPatient has taken all reasonable steps to ensure that all material is factually accurate, complete, and current. However, the knowledge and experience of a qualified healthcare professional should always be sought after instead of using the information in this page. Before taking any drug, you should always speak to your doctor or another qualified healthcare provider.

The information provided here about medications is subject to change and is not meant to include all uses, precautions, warnings, directions, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or negative effects. The absence of warnings or other information for a particular medication does not imply that the medication or medication combination is appropriate for all patients or for all possible purposes.

Faq icon

Video Consultations

Now Patient Data Security

Data Security

Our Commitment to You.

Find out moreNow Patient Data SecurityNow Patient Data Security

What is NowPatient

Telehealth and Online Pharmacy

NowPatient is a licensed online pharmacy and doctor service that is available around the world. Our service is FREE and packed with valuable features that can benefit your health such as medication reminders, educational blogs, medically approved symptoms checker, UK NHS online pharmacyprivate treatment plansRx Advantage cardhealth conditions information, affordable medications options, genetic testinghome test kitshealth riskspollen meterair quality monitor, weight loss plans, drug savings programs and lots more!

Laptop showing nowpatients app dashboard


To improve the lives of everyone by making high-quality care accessible and convenient

We are here to improve lives. Our service gives you access to smart features and resources that can help empower you to take control of your health and improve your health outcomes. All this, in one place, for FREE. We strive to bring a fresh perspective to managing health. NowPatient can be accessed by downloading the App or using your web browser.

Download our app today

A man and woman in a video call on an iphone.

Can I trust NowPatient

Meet our medical team

We are a passionate group of clinicians and medical writers covering a broad range of specialities with experience operating in health systems in the United Kingdom & United States. Providing excellent care and advice is at the heart of everything we do. You can read more about our medical team by visiting the medical team page or learn more about how we curate content by visiting our editorial process

Your Questions Answered

For your peace of mind, we can answer your questions quickly

We have a comprehensive list of FAQ’s on each feature page. Alternatively, for broader questions around our service just click the button below.
Find your answers