Toilet paper used the wrong way ‘putting your health at risk’, warns doctor

It is thought we spend an average of three hours on the toilet every week.

Despite this, some people might not be using the correct wiping technique with potentially dangerous consequences.

According to one doctor, this could actually put your health at risk.

Speaking to Health, gynaecologist Alyssa Dweck revealed that one of the biggest mistakes people make on the toilet is wiping from back to front.

By doing so you could be at risk from harmful bacteria and infections.

READ MORE: ‘Going to the toilet once during the night was first sign of my killer disease’

Instead, she said you should be wiping front to back – from the direction of your urethra towards your bottom.

Alyssa said: “There are far more bacteria in the rectal area; that’s why you want to avoid dragging the toilet paper in the other direction toward your urethra.

“Bringing this bacteria up [towards the] front can contribute to a urinary tract infection (UTI).”

Urinary tract infections occur when bacteria enters the urinary tract.

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They can be painful, causing a burning sensation when you urinate and can even lead to a kidney infection if not treated.

It is not just our wiping technique that can expose us to health issues. The amount and type of toilet paper we use can impact our wellbeing.

Martin Richards, director of hygienic technology experts at SMARTi Environmental, said you should be using on average up to 10 toilet sheets per visit to the loo.

He added: “Obviously, this can depend widely on whether it’s a number one or number two, but essentially try not to wrap yarns of toilet roll round your hand to use as this can be a waste.”

Martin also told The Sun that we should close the toilet lid after flushing. “Each toilet could have up to 500,000 germs per surface inch,” he explained.

According to toilet paper manufacturer Cushelle, the average person uses about seven sheets of toilet paper per wipe.

However many sheets you use you should always make sure you wipe until the area is clean.

If a small amount of stool is left behind it can cause the area to itch.

Experts also advise against using scented toilet paper. Although they smell nice, the dyes and chemicals used in the paper shouldn’t come into contact with our most intimate areas.

Catherine Rall, a registered dietitian who works with the vaginal wellness company Happy V, told BestLife: “In order for toilet paper to be scented, chemicals are used, and those chemicals are not good for your body.”

Finally, it is key to practise good hand washing after visiting the toilet.

However, The National Institute of Health, also states you should be doing it before you go to avoid problems like UTIs.

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