Kidney and bladder health

18 September 2012

Should men sit to pee?

In some countries men are being asked to sit down when they urinate. Do you? Would you?

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Stephen Shen, Taiwan’s Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) minister has suggested that men should sit down when they urinate, in order to create a cleaner environment, says a story on BBC News. Notices will be put up in public toilets, advising men to sit.

The call follows similar campaigns in Sweden and Japan, where one in 3 men reportedly prefers the a sitting-down peeing position. Sweden’s Left Party has cited floor hygiene, and more efficient bladder emptying as reasons to support a sitting stand.

While bladder emptying can become a challenge for people with prostate problems or other conditions, there seems to be little evidence that sitting down is more efficient. The bladder is basically a reservoir for urine, controlled by a sphincter. The contraction of the bladder muscles coordinates with the relaxing of the sphincter to release urine. Tilting the pelvis is sometimes recommended for pregnant women who struggle to void their bladder completely.

Mostly the politicians seem to be concerned about puddles of pee on the floor, and the unpleasant smell associated with them. For those who don’t want to sit, there are other solutions: in Japan, Sega made a splash with a urinal video game controlled by urine, with the bonus point of helping men aim more accurately. 

What do you think of the move towards sitting down to pee? E-mail us at community@health24.com to get your views heard.

(Adele Hamilton, Health24, Sept 2012)

(Picture: Man on toilet from Shutterstock)

Sources: BBC News, The Local Sweden, Health24.

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