More than likely, you have either heard of, or have seen, a Squatty Potty. So, what's the big deal?!
The John, the Can, the Loo, and the Throne all conjure images of our modern-day toilet. Before these toilets were a norm in society, many people relied on other ways of relieving themselves. Most of those ways included a squatting position over a dug hole, a chamber pot, or squat toilet (porcelain hole in the floor) as we commonly see in overseas countries.
As Pelvic PTs, we know that the common standard toilet may not be giving you an adequate anorectal angle for easy passage of stool. We also know that the puborectalis muscle (the sling-like muscle that surrounds your rectum) is in a contracted position while standing- to help keep the stool in, and while it does relax a bit in seated, we still need a slightly larger angle for the rectum to form a straighter line with the anal canal, for easier defecation.
What's an anorectal angle? The photo below shows an example of the angle of the rectum while sitting with and without the knees above the level of the hips.
Using a squatty potty, or something under the feet to raise the level of the knees above the hips may help with your bowel movements in these ways:
- Easier emptying of the bowels
- Less straining on the toilet
- Shorter time on the toilet (from speedier BMs!)
- A more relaxed pelvic floor when you go
Using a squatty potty isn't a mandatory switch, but it may definitely help improve your toilet time. Give it a try! You can also use some alternative items, such as a footstool, shoe box, toilet paper rolls, or trash can (on its side).
To learn more about ways to help your pelvic floor, contact me at Activcore Princeton.
Disclaimer: The views expressed in this post are based on the opinion of the author, unless otherwise noted, and should not be taken as personal medical advice. The information provided is intended to help readers make their own informed health and wellness decisions.