When it comes to cleaning yourself, you have the choice of wiping with toilet paper or washing using a bidet. People have always had to think about how best to keep themselves clean and free of germs after using the toilet. The problem was answered in ancient times with things like corn cob husks, sponges, and later with newspapers. These days most Americans will agree that washing with water is best way to clean the body, but they don’t apply that after going to the toilet.

Why is it that the bidet, accepted in so many countries around the world, is still a mystery to people in America?

The bidet is French invention from around 1710, but similar water-washing devices have been used in other countries for centuries as well. The first bidets were mounted near the commode, or real toilet, and the French used them to keep clean on a daily basis, as bathing was usually done only weekly. The bidet also served as a practical way for couples to prepare themselves before sex, as well as to rinse themselves afterwards. Eventually the bidet spread to other parts of Europe, everywhere it is much appreciated for its health-giving benefits. In countries like Italy, Spain and Greece you can find bidets in over 90% of bathrooms. Having grown up washing with water after going to the toilet, the bidet is a part of life for most Europeans.

In Muslim countries washing with water is part of religious teaching so bidets are common and usually referred to as a Shattaf or Muslim Shower. In Asian countries like Korea, Japan and Taiwan bidets can be found in most bathrooms. People in South America have also embraced the bidet as a regular part of everyday hygiene.

One reason Americans have not been a part of the bidet culture is because the old-fashioned bidets took up a lot of needed bathroom space and were somewhat inconvenient to use. Also, Americans are not accustomed to using a bidet, which may be why they don’t see the need to wash after going to the toilet. However, it is a fact that people in the United States are missing out on the benefits bidets offer, especially in the health department. Bidets are known to help relieve hemorrhoids, urinary tract infections, cramps and inflammatory bowel diseases.

In addition, modern bidet toilet seats make the old excuse of not having enough space a non-issue. Bidet toilet seats are designed to install on your existing toilet. With the improvement of technology, the bidet toilet seat experience has become more pleasant and convenient than ever before, so deciding whether to wipe or wash really isn’t much of a contest.


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