Toilet paper is one of the most common and necessary household items for personal hygiene. However, the choice of toilet paper can vary depending on personal preferences, availability, and cultural norms.
One of the options that some people may consider is using wet toilet paper instead of the regular kind. Wet toilet paper, also known as moist tissue, wet wipes, or flushable wipes, is a type of tissue that has been pre-moistened with water or other cleansing agents.
While some people swear by the benefits of using wet toilet paper, others are skeptical or unaware of the potential risks and benefits. In this article, we will examine what may happen if you use wet toilet paper instead of the regular kind, according to science.
One of the main reasons why people may use wet toilet paper is to feel cleaner and fresher after using the bathroom. Wet toilet paper can indeed help to remove more residue and bacteria from the anal area than dry toilet paper alone.
According to a study published in the Journal of Infection and Public Health, using moist tissue after dry toilet paper can reduce the number of fecal bacteria by up to 97%. However, the same study also found that using wet toilet paper alone was not as effective as using a combination of dry and wet toilet paper.
Therefore, if you want to maximize the hygiene benefits of wet toilet paper, you may need to use it in conjunction with dry toilet paper.
Another potential benefit of using wet toilet paper is that it can be gentler on the skin than dry toilet paper, especially if you have sensitive skin, hemorrhoids, or anal fissures. Wet toilet paper can provide some lubrication and a soothing effect, reducing the risk of irritation or itching.
However, this benefit can also depend on the quality and ingredients of the wet toilet paper. Some moist tissues may contain harsh chemicals, fragrances, or preservatives that can actually cause or worsen skin irritation.
Therefore, you should choose wet toilet paper that is specifically designed for sensitive skin and free from potential irritants.
One of the main concerns about wet toilet paper is its impact on the environment. Unlike dry toilet paper, which is usually made of biodegradable materials such as wood pulp, wet toilet paper often contains synthetic fibers, plastics, or other non-biodegradable materials.
As a result, wet toilet paper can take longer to decompose and contribute to the accumulation of waste in landfills, oceans, and rivers. Moreover, some wet toilet paper products may claim to be flushable, but they can still cause plumbing problems and sewer backups if not disposed of properly.
Therefore, if you want to use wet toilet paper, you should look for products that are labeled as biodegradable, compostable, or septic-safe, and avoid flushing them down the toilet.
As mentioned above, using wet toilet paper can pose a risk to plumbing systems if not handled correctly. Wet toilet paper can clump together and form blockages in pipes, leading to costly repairs or even sewage backups.
According to a report by Consumer Reports, many flushable wipes actually fail to disintegrate and can clog pipes and pumps. Even if a wet toilet paper product is labeled as flushable, it is still recommended to dispose of it in the trash instead of flushing it down the toilet.
In addition, using too much-wet toilet paper at once can also increase the risk of clogging or overflowing the toilet. Therefore, it is important to use wet toilet paper in moderation and to follow the disposal guidelines.
Another factor to consider when using wet toilet paper is its sustainability. As mentioned earlier, wet toilet paper often contains non-biodegradable materials that can contribute to environmental pollution.
Moreover, the production and transportation of wet toilet paper can also consume more energy and resources than dry toilet paper. Therefore, if you want to minimize your ecological footprint, you may want to choose a more sustainable alternative to wet toilet paper, such as reusable cloth wipes or bidets.
These options may require more upfront investment and maintenance, but they can also save money and reduce waste in the long run.
In summary, using wet toilet paper instead of the regular kind may have some advantages and disadvantages, depending on your needs and preferences. Wet toilet paper can enhance hygiene, skin health, and comfort, but it can also harm the environment, plumbing, and sustainability.
Therefore, before switching to wet toilet paper, you should consider the potential effects and choose a product that is safe, effective, and eco-friendly.
Ultimately, the best way to maintain good hygiene and health is to combine different methods, such as dry and wet toilet paper, bidets, or personal hygiene products, and to follow the recommended hygiene practices, such as washing your hands thoroughly after using the bathroom.