If you have been to both sides of the world you probably know what an Eastern and a Western toilet look like, possibly unfortunately. If not, I shall shed some light and some tips on how to use an Eastern toilet, aka the squat toilet.
I’m pretty sure you know what the Western toilet looks like so I’ll skip to the chase and tell you about the Eastern toilet; it’s basically a hole on the floor.
I have used these toilets in India a million times but I have yet to use them in other countries where they apparently have them too like Japan, Romania and China.
The toilet above was actually our toilet for 3 whole months! I don’t think I ever got completely used to it.
How To Use An Eastern Toilet
(Instructions helpful for women, and men who need to go #2.)
If you are ever traveling to this side of the world, a few tips might be very helpful to you, especially as a newbie:
1. BYOTP (Bring Your Own Toilet Paper). Most squat toilets don’t have toilet paper available. Make sure you carry some or some tissues with you in case you need to use the toilet in these countries. Have it ready before you squat down.
p.s. You might find Western toilets as an option, but don’t count on it.
2. Pull your pants all the way down to your ankles. You don’t want to be peeing or pooping on your pants. Try to keep them from touching the floor if possible by holding them with your hands, those floors are usually not the most hygienic.
If it gets too complicated just let them touch until you master this kind of toilet. You might be using one hand to hold your toilet paper.
3. Squat all the way down. It’s harder if you try to keep a 90 degree angle when you squat, just bend your knees and move your butt all the way down and relax.
4. Don’t lose your balance and fall. (See the last image in the diagram below)
5. After wiping, throw your paper on the trash can if there is one. Most of the time, the toilets might not be built to take paper.
6. Use the little bucket and faucet provided to “flush” by pouring water down the toilet. My mom will demonstrate this:
6. Wash your hands thoroughly! You might not find soap sometimes, it’s smart to also carry hand sanitizer.
Is the squat toilet better? Western VS Eastern
Apparently we Westerners got it wrong and the squat toilet is a million times healthier for the body because of our anatomy.
“Is the Western toilet in part responsible for problems like hemorrhoids, constipation, IBD (Inflammatory Bowel Disease), appendicitis, and even heart attacks?
“If you examine the data, there is a great deal of evidence this is true. The modern toilet has required us to change the position we use to evacuate our bowels, which changes the anatomy of… well, a poop, to put it bluntly.
“Infants instinctively squat to defecate, as does the majority of the world’s population. But somehow the West was convinced that sitting is more civilized.” source
You can read more about the scientific data and if you decide that squatting is better, here is a simple way to do that with a Western toilet… just use a foot stool like the squatty potty (the actual name of it) to conveniently move your legs up while you sit!
Have you ever used an Eastern toilet? Do you have a preference?