Why Peeing in the Shower May Not Be a Good Idea, According to Science

year ago

We’ve all probably heard the statement that peeing in the shower may help us save the environment. Researchers keep impressing us with numbers about how much water we could save if we did 2 jobs at the same time in our shower stalls. However, doctors view this seemingly positive habit from a totally different angle, and we found out why they treat peeing in the shower with a grain of concern.

Here at Bright Side, we always look for a different opinion in search of the truth. Today, we’d love for you to take a look at what some doctors think about a routine that may be common for us all and share your own thoughts about it as well.

Peeing in the shower seems like a smart idea to many, and for good reason.

We probably all do it from time to time without paying much attention to the process, but wonder if it’s actually okay. For people who do care about the environment, it’s not only good — it’s absolutely fine for our planet because it saves water that could be used for flushing the toilet.

Besides water conservation, however, people wonder if it’s safe or sanitary, since the shower is a place where you expect to step out cleaner than when you entered. Despite the common belief, urine is not sterile, and here’s one of the several concerns that doctors express about peeing in the shower.

Your bladder can be trained the wrong way.

Alicia Jeffrey-Thomas, a certified pelvic floor physical therapist, warns that when we pee in the shower at the sound of running water, we may be accidentally teaching ourselves to urinate when the command appears, which is the sound of the nozzle spraying. “If you pee in the shower or turn on the faucet or turn on the shower and then sit on the toilet to pee while the shower is running, you’re creating an association in the brain between the sound of running water and having to pee,” she says.

This effect is known as a Pavlovian effect, which is a reflex response to some outside sound or stimulus. A therapist explains that this might not be a huge problem for everyone, but “for people with any kind of pelvic floor dysfunction, this could contribute to leaking urine when you have the urge to use the restroom.”

Your bladder may not be prepared for it anatomically.

Peeing in the shower turns out to be potentially harmful to women. The key detail is you might not empty your bladder effectively. Dr. Jeffrey-Thomas explains why. According to her, women can’t fully relax the pelvic muscles when they try to urinate in a standing position. Men have a prostate to support their bladder, which means for them, the standing position while urinating is okay.

But women do not have this additional support, so for women, peeing in a standing or hovering position is not natural and causes the bladder to empty at much lower levels than is needed. Hovering over the toilet, similar to standing in the shower, means muscles won’t be relaxed, and the continence mechanism has to, again, be pushed and messed with.

What to do if the temptation is just too high

If you can’t resist the temptation to pee in the shower, it’s best to do it in your own shower, not a public one. And this is not a microbiological issue, but rather, a societal one.

Dr. Brahmbhatt, Clinic Urologist and Assistant Professor at UCF College of Medicine in Florida, says, “Someone could have a urinary tract infection. The urine could pick up some bugs from the end of the urethra as it exits.” So, doing this act in your own shower, not a public one, helps you avoid some unpleasant surprises.

What is your attitude toward this delicate issue? Do you believe in saving a lot of water while peeing in the shower?

Preview photo credit Kateryna Kon / Shutterstock.com


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