Poop splash sounds gross, and some people are understandably scared by the idea of it. A poop splash happens when the poop displaces water with lots of force. For poop-splash victims who are too embarrassed to ask about it, we’ve put together this comprehensive guide to answer all your burning questions about poop splash, including, is poop splash dangerous?
Is It Normal for Poop to Splash?
While it may not be the most pleasant topic to think about, it’s certainly something we’ve all wondered about at one point or another. So, is it normal for poop to splash when it hits the toilet water? Yes! And here is the explanation, like any other object, when poop is dropped in water, it displaces the water leaving a space full of air at the bottom of the toilet bowl. The displaced water shoots up and splashes on the sides and back of the toilet, often spraying onto your butt as you do your business.
The splash might be big or small, depending on the shape, weight, and size of the poop.
Can You Get Sick From Toilet Splash?
Let’s start with the elephant in the room: No, toilet water splashing up when pooping does not cause diseases. After pooping, one flushes the toilet, and all the icky stuff is washed away by water. Clean water then replaces the dirty water to keep everything clean for the next person. So, there is no risk of getting an infection or any other type of illness from a little poop splash on your hand or toilet seat.
The president of the American Society for Microbiology, Abigail Salyers, says that no one has ever gotten an STD from a toilet seat unless when having sex on the seat.
You are at risk of contracting a disease only if you touch your mouth or eat after touching contaminated surfaces like a toilet seat or door handle without washing your hands first. Therefore, remember to wash your hands before eating!
While there’s no definitive answer, some experts say that poop splashback could potentially lead to a urinary tract infection (UTI). The logic is that if bacteria from poop gets into your urethra, it could travel up to your bladder and cause an infection. However, it’s also worth noting that you’d have to have a pretty severe case of splashback for you to get uti from toilet water splash. Plus, UTIs can also be caused by other things like wiping from back to front or not peeing after sex.
Some people prefer squatting over sitting on the toilet to avoid poop splash and infections. This might seem like a clever idea, but it’s not always safe to do this. According to Dr. Preethi Daniel, squatting can lead to urinary tract infections if you aren’t careful about it. She says, “By not emptying your bladder completely, in a rush or if you are squatting, you are exposing your body to potentially harmful bacteria.”
In 2020, scientists found that squatting when you go to the restroom changes the way urine comes out. Stephanie Bobinger, a medical expert from Ohio State University, says that when you half squat to hold yourself in the air, the path of urine is obstructed and not as open. If you are in a rush or squatting and don’t empty your bladder completely, you could get exposed to harmful bacteria.
The researchers also found that half-squatting has harmful consequences that add up over time. They can lead to problems like pelvic dysfunction, which includes having weak muscles and bad coordination.
What Do You Do After a Poop Splash?
You only need to worry about poop splash if you’re using a toilet that hasn’t been flashed after another person used it. That could potentially carry some germs. In that case you can use an antibacterial wipe to carefully wipe the exposed skin. Otherwise, if the toilet was flashed before using, then you don’t need to worry as it’s just water.
To avoid splashing by poop, lay pieces of toilet paper on the water’s surface. The toilet papers will soak up some of the liquid, varying the surface tension so that when you poop, there is less chance for splash back to happen.
Now, you don’t want to use excess paper because it might clog your toilet. You also have to wait for some time before flushing the toilet successfully. So how many sheets should you place? Well, depending on how high your commode is from the ground, anywhere from one to four sheets should be good enough.
So, is poop splash dangerous? No, poop splash is not dangerous. However, it can be gross and unpleasant for the person who does the pooping. If you feel like you need to poop and want to avoid the splash, consider laying a few sheets of toilet paper on top of the water, as discussed earlier. Always wash your hands after going to the bathroom. This is so you don’t accidentally spread germs by touching anything else in the restroom or on your body with dirty hands.