What is a squat toilet and how to use one?
Squat toilet, Squatting toilet, French toilet, Turkish toilet, Indian toilet, Japanese toilet, alaturka and Arabic toilet are some of the names of this type of toilet. Here is a guide to finding out what exactly a squat toilet is, and how to use one. Read on if you are travelling or plan to be an expat in a foreign country where squat toilets are the norm. Unless you want to embarrassingly ask a local "How do I take a crap in this?"
Proceed reading only if you will be comfortable reading descriptive narrations of how to use a squat toilet. The aim of this article is not to gross anyone out, but prepare travelers and expats for a toilet experience that they've probably not experienced in their home countries.
What is a squat toilet
A squat toilet is a toilet which basically consists of a hole in the ground with foot rests on each side. As the name suggests, squat toilets are used by squatting rather than sitting. The toilet itself is a fully functional unit made from materials similar to that of a flush toilet and come with an attached tank or plumbing for a flush system. In some cases, squat toilets are made from stainless steel. A squat toilet does not have a toilet seat.
Countries that have squat toilets
Squat toilets are popular in many parts of the world. Italy, France, Turkey, Romania, China, Japan, Thailand, India, Hong Kong, Korea, and many other Middle Eastern, European and Asian countries. In some of these, squat toilets may only be found in non-metropolitan areas.
How to use a squat toilet
Here is a step by step illustration on how you can use a squat toilet to do your business.
- Check for toilet paper when you enter the toilet. In some countries, using a toilet paper isn’t always the norm. So if there is no toilet paper, carry your own.
- If the toilet has not been used since a long time and looks dry, flush it once before you start unless you want to deal with sticky issues later on.
- Make sure that the footrests of the squat toilet are dry and clean. Slippery footrests are known to cause many falls and injuries.
- Before you squat, remember that you are generally supposed to squat while facing the entrance of the toilet. Your buttocks should face the hole of the squat toilet while you should be looking at the toilet door.
- Remove your pants and achieve the squat position. The key to enjoying a squat positioned dump is to feel relaxed and squat to a point where there is no tension in your thigh or abdomen muscles. Crouch and loosen your shoulder blades for a comfortable squat.
- You should also know that it is not mandatory to remove your pants when you take a crap in a squat toilet. You can pull your pants down to your ankles. However this should be avoided if you are not familiar with this position because the chances of your pants touching the toilet floor and getting soiled are high. Women wearing skirts can tuck the end of the skirt in their waist bands. Again, if the skirt is too long, removing the skirt is a better option.
- Do your business.
- Don't be worried about aiming for the hole because a squat toilet is designed in a way to collect your excreta and simply move it towards the hole when you flush.
- Once you have finished taking a crap, use the toilet paper and simply flush the squat toilet. There is no toilet seat to worry about.
Using a squat toilet to pee
There are really no tips when it comes to explaining how to use a squat toilet to urinate for men. The principle of point and shoot remains constant. However, women who are not used to the squat position may find it tricky or inconvenient to urinate. As mentioned earlier, it is possible to use the squat toilet without completely removing your pants. However if you are a first time user, it is suggested that you remove your pants to avoid dribbling accidents. Undressing completely from the waist down is recommended for newbies.
Benefits of using a squat toilet
- One of the obvious benefits of using a squat toilet is that you will not need to touch your buttocks to the toilet seat, unlike a normal flush toilet. In fact, assuming that you will be wearing footwear while taking a crap in a squat toilet, not a single body part will touch the actual toilet. Hence, there are less chances of infection.
- There are many reports that claim that squatting while shitting has health benefits. There is less pressure on the bladder, uterus and the rectum passage.
- Users often report that taking a crap in the squatting position is more comfortable and easier than the sitting position.
- Squat toilets are generally cheaper than flush toilets. If the flush is connected to a plumbing system, there is no need for a flush tank or a toilet seat. As one would imagine, this minimal setup is considered cheaper to maintain.
- The squatting position applies more pressure to the abdominal area because the thighs press against the abdomen. This is considered to help push the waste out of the body naturally.
- Some even suggest that squatting straightens the passage between the rectum and the anus, leading to an uninterrupted flow of the excreta. In the sitting position, there is a bend in this passage way.