Although popular in many parts of the world, bidets never really “caught on” in the US – even though they’re believed to be healthier and more sanitary than toilet paper.
Experts claim that with consistent use, bidets can decrease the bacteria in your urine, limit the spread of germs, and lower the risk of hemorrhoids.
Plus, they’re better for the environment overall.
If you’re new to bidets, you’re probably wondering when and how to use them.
Do you use a bidet before or after wiping? Is wiping even necessary? Let’s find out.
Do You Use a Bidet Before or After Wiping?
The proper order of bidet use is poop – wash – wipe. Use the bidet after toilet use but before you wipe.
Some people wipe before using the bidet, and while this isn’t necessarily forbidden or wrong, it’s a bit counter-intuitive.
Bidets wash the genitalia, inner buttocks, perineum, and anus with water, so there’s no need to wipe before using the bidet.
If you’re in a hurry, you might find a quick pre-wipe useful, because most cleansing sessions take at least a minute.
Wiping before using the bidet essentially cuts the cleaning time in half. It doesn’t make much difference at the end of the day, though.
With that said, there’s really no need to wipe after using the bidet, because some bidets have an automatic drying feature.
If you have a cheap bidet that doesn’t have a dryer, you probably want to dry your privates with toilet paper. A quick, gentle wipe or dab should do the trick.
Regardless of whether you’re wiping or not, you’re still using way less toilet paper overall.
This saves not only money but also reduces paper waste. It’s a win-win in either scenario.
Instances Where Wiping Before Using the Bidet Is Useful
Although wiping before using the bidet isn’t absolutely necessary, there are some cases where doing so can be beneficial.
Just like how soft stools take a lot more TP than usual to clean, it also takes a bit longer to wash with a bidet.
In these cases, pre-wiping is useful because it shortens the cleaning cycle. Instead of staying under the spray for more than a minute, you can reduce the duration by wiping beforehand.
Here’s the thing: unlike handheld bidets, toilet seat bidets prevent you from cleaning in all directions.
As such, those with runny stool or bowel incontinence have to deal with flecks of stool sticking to areas where the nozzle can’t reach.
Pre-wiping is useful as it removes stool that isn’t within the nozzle’s path.
Limited Warm Water
Some bidet systems expel a limited amount of warm water or automatically turn off after a minute or so of use.
For these types of bidets, wiping is beneficial because it reduces the time you need to use the bidet. You don’t have to worry about cold water touching your private parts for an extended period.
Individuals With Limited Mobility
Bidets are useful for people with limited mobility because once they’re seated, all they need to do is wait until the washing and drying process is complete.
However, if the bidet is not properly positioned, it sometimes fails to clean the area thoroughly.
Pre-wiping is useful for these scenarios as it ensures the individual is 100% clean after using the toilet.
Tips to Follow When Using the Bidet
If you’ve never used a bidet before, here are some important tips to follow:
- Check the water temperature of the bidet before use. The water temperature should be slightly above your body temperature to prevent discomfort and potential injury.
- Properly position the bidet before use. Figure out where the jets of water come from so it doesn’t spray in an unexpected direction.
- Make sure your underwear, shirt, pants, etc., are out of the way before using the bidet so your clothes won’t get wet.
- You don’t need to wipe or use soap when using the bidet, but you can do so for a more thorough cleaning.
- For women, direct the water front-to-back to prevent bacteria from entering your vulva.
- Once you’ve finished using the bidet, turn off the T-valve to prevent water leakage.
Unless you’re dealing with limited warm water or soft/running stool, you’re not required to wipe before using the bidet.
Here’s a little tip: if the bidet doesn’t do a good job in cleaning your rear, position it closer to the target and increase the water pressure.
It should clean your backside without the help of TP.