Doctors have revealed why urinating in the shower is hazardous for both men and women’s bladders, as well as the proper manner for women to use the restroom while seated. Dr. Teresa Irwin, a urogynaecologist, came to TikTok to express her thoughts on the matter, claiming that while it would properly empty the bladder while standing, it also trains your brain to discharge urine every time you hear water running. ‘You don’t want to do it all the time because your bladder will want to urinate every time you hear the sound of water since it’s used to hearing the sound of water in the shower,’ she stated. ‘So if you’re washing your hands or doing the dishes, your bladder will be drooling because it needs to go to the bathroom.’ Dr. Alicia Jeffrey-Thomas (pictured), a pelvic floor therapist in Boston, agreed with Dr. Irwin, citing the potentially severe side effects of peeing while standing under a rushing stream of water.
In 2021, she told her 468,000 TikTok followers, “If you pee when the water is running, you’re forming an association in your brain between the sound of running water and having to urinate.” ‘Not to mention, people born with female anatomy were not built to pee standing up,’ she continued, ‘which might potentially lead to some leak difficulties when you hear running water outside of the shower.’ Even with one leg raised in the ‘Captain Morgan’ stance demonstrated in the video, ‘your pelvic floor isn’t going to relax properly, which means we’re not going to be emptying our bladder exceptionally well,’ according to Dr Jeffrey-Thomas. ‘So urinate before you turn on the shower water, and if you get the need to pee while you’re in there, avoid it,’ Dr Jeffrey-Thomas advised. The doctor referred to scientist Ivan Pavlov’s renowned dog experiment, which led to the discovery of classical conditioning. ‘He rings the bell every time he puts food out for the dogs,’ Dr Jeffrey-Thomas explained,’so the dog gradually comes to associate the bell (with food) and he starts to slobber even if there’s no food there.’ The doctor’s orders in a series titled How To Train Your Bladder are to use the bathroom only ‘three to four times during the day, but a minimum of two’. Dr. Jeffrey-Thomas added, “Ideally, you should not be getting up at night.” ‘The goal is to ride the wave so that we’re not giving in at that high level of desire to go…and also not leaking,’ she continued. You’re training your brain to send that signal to your body more frequently if you regularly give in to the impulse to go to the bathroom straight quickly.
Professor Ajay Rane, Director of Urogynaecology at Townsville Hospital, told podcast Mamamia that there is a proper way for women to pee. ‘Given the structure of the western closet, the appropriate position is to sit on the toilet with your feet flat on the ground,’ Prof. Rane said in 2004 at an American Urogynaecology Society Meeting on ‘The Perfect Pee.’ ‘You bend forward with your elbows on your knees, as if reading a newspaper on the floor.’ This speeds up the emptying of your bowels and bladder.’