There’s an easy way to avoid toilet-paper stockpiling frenzies and improve your household hygiene at the same time – install a ‘washlet’ or bidet toilet.
Genuine concerns about the goods shortages and household lockdowns that might eventuate during a Coronavirus outbreak have motivated Australians to acquire more toilet paper.
Whether you are following a natural instinct to make your family resilient in a crisis or swayed by a pandemic-prepping obsession – don’t panic: There is a paperless path.
The latest washlets, bidet toilets or smart toilets utilise water for washing butts and warm air for drying them, so paper usage is greatly reduced or eliminated.
All this means in typical circumstances: fewer trees cut down, fewer trucks hurtling down highways and fewer families spending on average hundreds of dollars on toilet paper each year.
Sophisticated bidet-toilet models also offer hands-free and sanitising features that take hygiene to the next level; and with cleanliness a heightened priority across the globe, this level is becoming more standard.
Bidets to the world
Bidets have been in use for a long time, developed around the 1700s by the French expressly for washing private parts.
Instead of a separate bidet and toilet, the hybrid bidet-toilet is now popular in Europe, with extra advantages including warm water, night lights and a heated seat. The ‘washlet’ is now the norm in technology- and cleanliness-savvy Japan. According to Wikipedia, “The current state of the art for Western-style toilets in Japan is the bidet toilet, which, as of March 2016, is installed in 81% of Japanese households.”
In the USA the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) classifies bidets as durable medical equipment in some cases. Bidets can be especially suitable for elderly and disabled people.
There has been considerably less uptake in Australia, but that is about to change because a bidet can actually use less water by removing the need to flush away paper waste.
Models to choose from
Attachable bidet components can be added to your normal toilet for a quick fix, but a better option is to start out with a new washlet.
Look out for these features for maximum hygiene:
- Smart toilets replicate a bidet, but with retractable nozzles that wash and dry
- New toilet designs have rimless pans, reducing hiding places for bacteria.
- Anti-stain and antibacterial coatings can repel water and waste.
- Touchless dual-flush glass panels are activated by sensors, meaning you only have to wave your hand in front of the button to trigger a flush.