To hover or not to hover, that is the question….
We’ve all been there. We’re desperate for the loo whilst out shopping and all that is available is the public loo. The public loo seat confronts us, complete with stains, droplets of fluid of varying colours and a few fragments of loo roll. We hover over the offending seat with our legs barely separated. Despite being so desperate only a minute ago, nothing seems to be happening now. Eventually a tiny dribble appears but because we’re not bent over the seat enough, it dribbles down our leg. We bend over a bit more and finally, our bladder begins to empty. A few seconds later, the flow stops and we straighten up. Oops, we weren’t quite finished – a few more dribbles escape to join the previous occupants on the loo seat.
This is a common experience to many women and often doesn’t confine itself to public loos. We often hover over the loo rather than sitting on it properly which results in us not fully emptying our bladders. This can lead to bladder infections if it happens often enough but can also result in leakage after we have stood up. It also means that we are likely to need the loo again after only a short period.
If you are concerned about the cleanliness of the loo seat then carry a small packet of disinfectant wipes in your handbag to clean the seat with. Another alternative is to place loo roll over the seat.
Getting into position…
It can seem strange but how you position yourself on the loo is really important. Sitting properly helps to ensure that you empty your bladder fully but also makes it easier for you to move your bowels.
Sit fully on the loo seat and separate your knees. Raise your heels so that your knees are higher than your hips. Keep your back straight and lean forwards from your hips so that your elbows rest on your knees. Think of a man sitting on the loo reading a newspaper and you won’t be far off!
Once you have emptied your bladder, tighten your pelvic floor muscles and stand up. Sometimes it can help to then sit down again and try to wee some more before standing up again. That way those last few drops end up in the loo rather than on you.
By Alison Bourne MA (Cantab) BSc MCSP ACPWH