If you’ve never seen a bidet in the United States, that might change soon. This bathroom fixture is gaining popularity. It’s already in wide use for big portions of Europe, South America, the Middle East, and Asia, where such a thing is considered necessary for basic hygiene.
To really understand why bidets are catching on here, you need to know more about them.
A Little Background
Historians think the bidet was invented back in the early 16th century, in France. That explains why these devices are so popular in the European nation, among others. In French, the term “bidet” means “horse.” More precisely, it’s a reference to a cob or a horse that’s particularly strong and has short legs. If that seems odd, just know the name is a reference to how you’re supposed to use a bidet.
It wasn’t until 1750 that bidets gained a hand pump. That innovation allowed for a spray of water, helping users refresh themselves with greater ease.
Nobody knows for sure why the United States has resisted the bidet as a bathroom fixture. Many other developed countries use them, but Americans haven’t warmed up to the idea. Here are a few theories:
- It’s a French invention, so the English naturally reject it. Being a former British colony, the US has followed suit.
- During World War II, American soldiers saw bidets in European brothels. That association has spread the sentiment that bidets are immoral in some way.
- Bathrooms in the United States are pretty crowded, so there’s simply no room for another appliance.
Advantages of Bidets
Americans are starting to realize that bidets offer some advantages versus only using toilet paper to clean up. That fact alone could be fueling the rise of popularity for this plumbing fixture in US bathrooms.
- Bidets aren’t abrasive like some toilet paper. Sure, you can buy the quilted toilet paper, but some people have extra sensitive skin.
- Fans of bidets claim they keep you cleaner. It’s embarrassing, but sometimes people miss things with toilet paper, and that’s not very pleasant. A stream of water cleans the whole area better, like a mini shower.
- Using water to clean up instead of killing trees to make toilet paper is more environmentally friendly. At least this is the argument of some bidet supporters.
A Fresh Take
Helping with bidet adoption in the United States is a fresh crop of high-tech options. Americans love cutting-edge tech, so things like Kohler intelligent toilets that have bidet functions built right into them are making a difference. They also solve the problem of not enough room, because you get a toilet and bidet in one.
If you’re interested in a bidet or any other fixture for your bathroom, contact us today at Plumbwell Services.