5 Health Benefits of Bidets That Might Make You Say Goodbye to Toilet Paper for Good

If you're grossed out by bathroom talk, it's time to get over it.

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For most of us, the COVID pandemic brought about many lifestyle changes. Some of them stuck (raise your hand if you're working remotely right now because your company no longer has an office) and others proved fleeting (remember leaning out our windows banging pots and pans at 7 p.m. every evening?).

One of the more unexpected outcomes of pandemic life, and the accompanying supply chain issues that came along with it, is that due to a shortage of toilet paper, many people installed bidets in their bathrooms. If you're one of them, then you probably don't need to be sold on its benefits, but if you're still exclusively using toilet paper, it might be time to reconsider your hygiene habits.

"If a bird pooped on you, would you jump into your shower, not turn on the water, and start wiping down your body with dry paper?" Miki Agrawal, the Founder and Chief Creative Officer of TUSHY, asks Best Life. "People would call you crazy! So why are we doing that to the dirtiest part of our body?"

Read on for five ways using a bidet can boost your health—and one big bonus benefit for the planet, too.

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Using a bidet can help prevent urinary tract infections.

Smart japanese bidet automated toilet washlet with remote for easing cleaning rinsing with water without using toilet paper. at home bathroom modern lifestyle.
Maridav / Shutterstock

According to the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services' Office on Women's Health, more than half of all women will suffer from a urinary tract infection (UTI) in their life.

"UTIs are serious and often painful," they write—a fact that anyone who has suffered from a UTI can confirm. "UTIs are caused by bacteria or, rarely, yeast getting into your urinary tract. Once there, they multiply and cause inflammation (swelling) and pain."

While they note that "wiping from front to back after using the bathroom" can help prevent UTIs, Agrawal says using a bidet is an even better option. "Wiping with dry toilet paper after you poop is not only ineffective, but contributes to [an] estimated eight million cases of UTIs" in the U.S. each year.

Using a bidet can help prevent hemorrhoids.

businessman sitting on the toilet with hemorrhoids
cunaplus / Shutterstock

If you've ever suffered from hemorrhoids—swollen veins around the rectum and anus—then you already know that wiping your poor bottom with toilet paper, no matter how quilted and cushy, isn't pleasant. Washing with a bidet instead can help provide relief, but did you know that using a bidet may help prevent hemorrhoids from developing in the first place?

"Millions of Americans have [hemorrhoids] or are at risk for developing them, and that number only increases as we age," the experts at Healthline write. "The research behind bidets for hemorrhoids is still small, but what's out there is positive so far. A small 2011 study of electronic bidets and healthy volunteers found that low-to-medium warm water pressure can help relieve pressure on the anus … Warm water may also promote blood circulation in the skin around the anus."

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Using a bidet helps prevent the spread of disease.

Toilet bowl with electronic high technology. Blue light in toilet bowl with bidet
Alano Design / Shutterstock

"Bacteria, infections, and viruses spread easily through fecal matter," Agrawal explains. "A study by Ube Frontier University's Department of Nursing found that bidets are efficacious in preventing the spread of diarrheal feces and defecation-related hand contamination, whereas wiping with toilet paper left a plethora of bacteria."

You'll want to make sure that you keep your toilet and your bidet squeaky clean, however. "If bacteria or virus particles get into the water tank or on the nozzle, everyone who uses the bidet could be exposed to those germs," gastroenterologist Christine Lee, MD, told the Cleveland Clinic. "Don't touch the nozzle to your body. Clean it regularly and rinse it well."

Using a bidet may help prevent yeast infections.

woman itching from a yeast infection
Siriluk ok / Shutterstock

Yeast infections are another pesky problem that affects three out of four women during their lifetimes, according to The Mayo Clinic. Caused by an overgrowth of yeast, the fungal infection causes itching, burning, and irritation, they explain.

Since yeast flourishes in a moist environment, the dryer feature on many built-in bidet seats can help combat yeast infections, the bidet experts at Omigo write.

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Using a bidet helps prevent dry skin, itching, and irritation.

man scratching his bottom
Nik Frey / Shutterstock

Bidets are great for "a myriad of other issues like anal fissures, dry skin, itching, and irritation," Agrawal tells Best Life. "Bidets also provide comfort and relief during menstruation, vaginal irritation, and inflammation."

Pregnant people, in particular, can benefit from a bidet, she says. "For pregnancy, bidets are invaluable as they allow you to stay clean even when mobility becomes an issue. Postpartum, your perineum may have swelling, bruising, or other complications that can be soothed by bidets."

Bidets are better for the health of the planet, too.

Tree hugging, little boy giving a tree a hug with red heart concept for love nature
Brian A Jackson / Shutterstock

Concerned about the environment? A bidet is an eco-friendly option.

"Americans' yearly toilet paper usage kills 15 million trees, wastes 437 billion gallons of water, and uses 253,000 tons of bleach," Agrawal tells Best Life. "TUSHY uses only about one pint of water when it washes your butt (compared to the 37 gallons of water it takes to create a single roll of toilet paper), and then you need only a few sheets of toilet paper to pat dry, reducing your toilet paper use by up to 80 percent! They're a life-saver not only for the health of your butt, but the health of the planet."

Agrawal adds, "We've been led to believe that toilet paper does the job, but all it does is cost us money every month (to the tune of billions of dollars per year if you add us all together), kills millions of trees per year, and causes chronic infections and disease down there."

Elizabeth Laura Nelson
Elizabeth Laura Nelson is the Deputy Health Editor at Best Life. A mom and a marathon runner, she’s passionate about all aspects of health and wellness. Read more
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