Using a sex toy to spice up a solo session is very common, and research by Lovehoney in 2017 even revealed that using a sex toy could make a woman’s orgasm last 17% longer – and who doesn’t want that?
Problems only arise when we turn to more unusual items to make ourselves climax, some of which could be damaging to our genitals.
Earlier this year, we warned men not to masturbate with pineapple juice (it will sting and could lead to infections) or to rub toothpaste on their penises to last longer in bed.
Now, we have to tackle a tooth-related masturbation method as a few days ago, an old story started circulating the internet. It tells the tale of a woman who confessed that she used to masturbate with her electric toothbrush.
Firstly, this is not recommended – so if you’re reading this while brushing your teeth, don’t get any ideas.
A quick search on social media around reveals that this woman isn’t the only one to have used bathroom tools to get an orgasm.
‘Did everyone not use an electric toothbrush to masturbate as a teen?,’ one person tweeted. There’s also a Ask Reddit forum where someone asked others if they have masturbated with an electric toothbrush, with one person saying ‘it works in an emergency’.
The masturbation method has even been depicted on TV, when a character on Orange Is The New Black got herself off with a toothbrush.
So, now that’s we’ve established this is a thing, let’s talk about why it’s a bad idea.
‘Using anything that isn’t intended to be a masturbating tool has its risks, even proper sex toys that aren’t properly cleaned or are deteriorating can lead to vaginal infections and urinary tract infections if bacteria gets into the urethra,’ Dr Diana Gall from Doctor 4 U tells Metro.co.uk.
‘While an electric toothbrush may seem like the perfect DIY masturbating tool, it can actually do more harm than good.
‘The vibrating bristles on the toothbrush can actually cause abrasions, tears and cuts to the vulva and vagina, and cause the tissue to become inflamed.
‘Vaginal tissue is delicate and minor tears can happen simply through penetrative sex or inserting objects into the vagina.
‘However, these tears and cuts make it easier for germs and bacteria to enter the body. It may cause soreness, bleeding, and increase your risk of contracting an STI as the infection can enter through open wounds.
‘Plus, if you’re using a toothbrush that has been used, you’re exposing yourself to even more germs and bacteria.’