Bidets for Users with Arthritis

For those of us living with arthritis, completing simple tasks can be a challenge. Bending down, stretching up, turning your body, and other physical movements can be a painful experience for those with arthritis. This is especially true when one has to use the toilet. For decades arthritis sufferers have had to endure the pain associated with using the toilet and wiping. The mere act of contouring one's body and reaching behind to wipe oneself has caused many to experience unnecessary strain and discomfort made worse by their arthritis. But this doesn’t have to be the case. 

A bidet can greatly reduce the amount of effort and strain required of someone with arthritis when using their toilet and subsequently cleaning oneself. In this article we will discuss how a bidet can help alleviate the pain associated with using the toilet for those with arthritis, the features in a bidet that will be most beneficial, the bidet models one should look for, and some tips for utilizing your bidet to its fullest potential. So without further ado, let’s jump right into it. 

Difficulties Using the Toilet 

It’s estimated that 58.5 million people, or 24% of all adults, have some form of arthritis in the United States, based on a recent CDC study. That is a staggering amount of people experiencing pain or discomfort on a daily basis. It would be no understatement to say that finding ways to help reduce the strain one exerts on themselves on a daily basis is of paramount importance for those living with arthritis. Besides medication and physical therapy, alleviation from arthritis can be hard to come by; enter bidet seats. 

A bidet seat is a non-electric or electric seat attachment that replaces your existing toilet seat. It works in conjunction with your toilet bowl and tank and gives you amenities not found on regular toilet bowls. Bidet seats will fit onto a variety of toilet models and toilet bowl shapes (elongated or round). A benefit of installing a bidet seat is the lack of need to replace your toilet bowl and tank. The only part of your toilet that would need to be replaced is the toilet seat itself. 

Benefits of a Bidet Seat

A bidet seat is of great benefit to those living with arthritis in that they allow users to effectively and efficiently clean themselves after having used the toilet. With toilet paper, a user would have to either stand up or hunch over and reach behind themselves in order to clean themselves. Not only is this an uncomfortable and, for those with arthritis, a painful process but it is also a very ineffective method of cleaning oneself. For those with arthritis of the hands, reaching behind themselves and wiping with toilet paper can be extremely uncomfortable and painful. Add to that the fact that wiping with toilet paper merely spreads residue around and does a poor job actually cleaning you, it's no surprise many are looking for alternatives to wiping with toilet paper. Wet wipes are a bit better but are still ineffective at completely cleaning you after having used the toilet. 

A bidet seat utilizes a water spray to more effectively and efficiently clean your bottom after using the toilet. You are able to control the intensity of the spray pressure, position of the nozzle, and can even activate a nozzle oscillation mode which automatically moves the nozzle forward and backwards to clean you even better. If you opt for an electric bidet seat then you will also be able to use the built in warm air dryer to dry you after you finish a wash cycle. This is a godsend for those with arthritis as utilizing both the rear wash and warm air dryer functions can eliminate the need to reach back to clean and/or dry yourself. Many bidet seats also have auto wash and dry modes which activates a rear wash and warm air dryer cycle with the press of a button, further simplifying the bidet experience. 

Some great models to consider are:

Factors to Consider

Some important factors to consider when looking at buying a bidet are electrical requirements. An electric bidet seat will require a 120V GFCI outlet to power it. The electrical cords on most bidets are about 4 feet long but you can use an extension cord if an outlet is not within reach. You will also need to make sure your toilet is compatible with a bidet seat. Check out our fitment guide for more information. 

If you do not have an electrical outlet and cannot or do not want to use an extension cord to power your bidet, you can always opt for a non-electric bidet seat. A non-electric model will have a water spray but will lack the other features included in an electric model such as a warm air dryer, warm water spray, and heated seat. 

Tips for Using a Bidet

When you first get your bidet, it’s important to know that there is a slight learning curve. Just like with many home appliances, the more you use the bidet the more comfortable and familiar you will become with it. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different heat settings, spray pressure settings, and nozzle positions. It may take some time but eventually you will find the settings you prefer the best.