How to use a Hand-held Bidet
No two people do everything exactly the same, and therefore it follows that this will also apply to the individual way in which we clean ourselves. Only you can determine your preferred style or way to use a hand held bidet. Several factors will influence your preference, including tradition, body shape, size, flexibility, and whether you are male or female. If you are not familiar with using hand-held bidets it can take some time to develop your own personal ‘best technique’.
Regardless of individual preference, there are principles for using hand-held bidets (whilst seated) which stay the same for everybody:
1. Hand held bidets require both hands to be used for the cleaning process; one to operate the wash gun, and the other to do the washing. Which hand you use for washing will depend on your cultural or religious background, or just individual preference. Use of the left hand only for cleansing, and considering it unclean for many other uses in everyday life, is a significant custom in the Muslim world generally, and also in India.
2. The wash gun is never used to direct water up from inside the toilet bowl!!!
This would cause the wash gun (and the hand holding it) to become contaminated with fecal matter). Hand-held bidets are NOT intended to provide an enema function; internal washing like this is the sole domain of the many various toilet seat bidets (with extending nozzles) now readily available.
It is not our intention to list here all the varied (and kinky) uses for hand held bidets!
In conventional use; the wash gun should be operated from above the toilet bowl and the stream of water directed down at an angle, across the body parts being cleaned. The fingers of your free hand are then used to direct this water up onto the part being washed and to gently agitate this area. It’s no different really to washing your hands – they wouldn’t get very clean if you just held them under running water!
The only exception to this rule is hand held bidets specifically designed for carer use, where the bidet is a long wand that is inserted under the patients bottom. A stream of water is then directed straight up onto the area needing to be cleaned. Please be aware this type of bidet spray will need cleaning after use – usually by simply flushing the toilet and holding the bidet wand under the water stream. A good example of this type is available from Australian Bidet
With conventional hand-held bidets; the idea of touching your own pooey bottom may not be that appealing, so by all means wipe first using toilet paper if you so prefer. While not strictly essential; many people also find washing to be more comfortable with the assistance of a liquid soap product. Because you are using a continual flow of water, fecal matter does not adhere to your washing hand as many people may well imagine. If using soap, be sure to rinse well to remove any residues as these could cause allergies in sensitive individuals. (Doctors do however, usually advise against women using soap for vaginal cleaning)
As a general rule; women usually find it easier to direct the water from the front, and men (because they have dangly bits) often find it easier to do this from behind. Agitating the area with your other hand is usually achieved (for both sexes) from the front – males obviously needing to hold ‘other genitalia’ slightly off to one side at the same time.
The benefits of women washing from the front are pretty obvious: no more urinary tract infections! Cross contamination of bacteria from the anal area to vagina becomes a thing of the past!
3. After you have finished washing, replace the wash gun in its wall station, then using toilet paper or paper towel dry your “washing hand” first. Using fresh paper, simply pat your bottom dry to enjoy that all-day feeling of shower fresh clean!
4. Good hygiene practice does of course remain exactly the same; “always wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water after using the toilet”.
And for those who want to be contentious about correct use of a Hand-held bidet:
If the hand-held bidet is being used correctly, high water pressure is neither desirable or needed, as the actual washing should be done with your free hand – exactly the same as you would wash that part of your body in the shower. Too high water pressure will cause the water to simply hit your hand and then splash outwards – and everywhere else – instead of up onto the parts you are actually trying to wash.
For most installations this will mean restricting the flow of water to a more gentle stream (on a more or less permanent basis), to your personal preference by using using the tap on the wall.
Some people who have never been shown the right way, do persist in using a hand-held bidet incorrectly – from underneath and shooting the water straight up onto the anal area. This inevitably results in fecal contamination of the hand piece (and often the hand holding it), and usually does not achieve really effective cleaning anyway. There are wrinkles (and often hairs) around your sphincter that will require some agitation to clean properly. ‘Touch free’ cleaning like this can be provided by an under-seat bidet, electronic bidet or non-electric bidet – with various levels of effectiveness – depending obviously on the model.
Remember that cleaning anything with water is dependant on 3 factors:
- Detergent (soap)
While heat and detergent are needed to remove grease & oils (not normally present in fecal matter), it is the agitation – whether provided by just the water pressure or your hand – that is the most essential aspect in effective removal of dirt and bacteria in anal cleaning.
Look; lets be sensible about this:
You could hit your arse with a high pressure cleaner – and that would clean very effectively because the water pressure alone provides adequate agitation. Of course high water pressure like this would not only be very painful – but also extremely dangerous.
Herein lies the limitation of touch-free, water-cleaning effectiveness provided by under-seat, electronic or non-electric bidet seats. The water pressure must be limited to avoid possible damage to sensitive tissue. Now don’t get me wrong here; the ability to clean just inside the anal passage (enema function) is where these bidets can really shine. But for cleaning around the anal/vaginal area; nothing comes close to the effectiveness (and versatility) of a hand-held bidet & physical agitation.
After all, doctors don’t just hold their hands under running water before a critical medical procedure; but scrub vigorously to physically remove any offending dirt and bacteria that may be present.
When cleaning your car: you don’t just hose it – do you?
To illustrate this point a little further: In many places where hand held bidets are common like Indonesia, Thailand & Malaysia; country areas often do not have access to a reliable piped water supply. During times of heavy use (like early morning and night) the water flow will actually stop. These areas usually will – as an alternative to a H.H. Bidet – have a tank of water beside the toilet, with a plastic dish for flushing the toilet, and often a smaller dipper for personal washing.
This dipper is used to pour the water onto your hand, and from there splash it up onto the anal area; washing with either left or right hand (depending on religious custom or personal preference). This method obviously works best with squat toilets, hence their continued popularity in these areas. When water is available, the tap is usually left slowly running into this tank – as in in the photo left – so there is enough water for the next user.
With standard (raised) toilet pans, a similar washing method often makes use of a washing jug (with a long spout like a little watering can). This makes it easier to direct the water to the exact spot (and not get water everywhere), but still doing the actual washing with your hand. The only real disadvantage of this method over a wash-gun is convenience; you must always be refilling the jug.
How to use the USABidet Under-seat Bidet
If this is the first time you have used your bidet; we recommend that water flow be restricted with the tap on the wall to a safe, comfortable level, with the bidet operating valve fully open.
Too high water pressure (where the flow has not been restricted) can cause damage to sensitive human tissue!
Once you have adjusted the flow to a comfortable level (with the bidet operating tap in the full open position), you can simply leave the wall tap at this setting. We recommend using the 1/4 turn isolating valve only for turning off the bidet on/off completely; i.e. to prevent children playing with the bidet – but while not shutting off water supply to the toilet.
The most obvious difference with this bidet is the single, large diameter outlet jet – rather than the soft spray head on hand held models. This design makes it possible to direct a single, high volume (concentrated) jet of water at the anal area – which can achieve very effective cleaning inside the anal passage itself (enema function).
OK, here we go!
Assuming your USABidet has now been installed correctly – and the water flow restricted to a comfortable level:
1. Sitting normally on the toilet seat, pull the operating lever on the left side of the seat up to about level with the seat. This will usually be the optimum position for most people.
2. Now slowly open the operating valve with you right hand. You will find that if you start with a fairly gentle stream while at the same time rocking your body side to side & back and forth slightly; you will clean off most of the external goop without splashing too much of it around the toilet bowl. A stream similar to the photo left is all that’s required at this stage (The optional blade type handle shown does make accurate adjustment easier for people with arthritis or other handicap issues). For the gentlemen; if you find that you are only getting a ‘sack-wash’, this means you may need to pull the operating lever up slightly more.
Now to get the internal gunk:
3. While continuing to hold the operating handle about level; slowly open the valve with your right hand to full-bore, while at the same time relaxing your anal muscle. If your body is positioned correctly you will feel the water entering the last part of your small intestine. Now close the valve with your right hand while releasing the handle with your left hand – and let the injected water (and poo remnants) out by once again relaxing your anal muscle. Repeating this process several times is usually enough to get that sphincter absolutely sparkling clean!
4. Now repeat the first process again for external cleaning; to wash off any external poo remnants that may still remain.
5. Pat dry with a couple of squares of toilet paper (or paper towel) – any colour on the paper means you need to persist a little longer with this final cleanup! This IS where a hand-held bidet really comes into its own – when used in conjunction with an under-seat or electronic bidet. Handy also for cleaning the toilet bowl (and the bidet hoop if necessary) when you have finished.
Don’t forget to check the bidet hoop:
6. Once you have flushed the toilet and cleaned up any skid-marks with the toilet brush, lift the bidet operating lever and check you haven’t left any specks of poo on the bidet hoop itself. A quick squirt with a hand-held bidet, or a little more artful use of the toilet brush is all that is normally required here.
7. Finally; lift the toilet seat and wipe dry under the seat and the bidet hoop with a couple more squares of toilet paper (we do admit to being a little ‘anal’ when it come to this final ‘clean & tidy’ bit).
Seriously though; this is all that’s required to keep your USABidet in top working order for many years to come! Surely one of this bidet’s most compelling features has got to be it’s downright ruggedness and simplicity; but if you continually leave the bidet hoop wet with water, you will slowly get a build-up of residue from minerals in the water. This would eventually then need cleaning with something more aggressive like CLR.
Just one more thing to cover in the use of under-seat bidets:
8. Constipation issues. For people who regularly suffer from this problem; under-seat, non-electric or electronic bidets can be worth their weight in gold. One good shot into the anal passage before attempting to defecate can make all the difference between a bowel motion actually happening – or not. Not only does water have the ability to soften and loosen the dry/compacted stools that cause difficult & painful motions, but it can also assist stool movement by providing much needed additional lubrication.
This page will be added to in following months – covering correct use for some other types of bidets as well. We hope to eventually also include some complimentary video presentations.
(Not easy to get this right; but if a picture is worth a thousand words, a video has got to be worth a lot more!)