Doctor shares gruesome reason you should never use your phone on the toilet
Haemorrhoids: NHS expert gives advice on treatment
Since smartphones became popular it’s not unusual for someone to take their mobile with them when going to the toilet.
According to YouGov, more than half of us are guilty of this habit with 57 percent of people admitting to using their device on the loo.
While it may seem like the perfect time to catch up with messages, health experts have warned it might not be a good thing to do.
Speaking to Healthline, colorectal surgeon Doctor Karen Zaghiyan, said that lingering on the toilet longer than is needed can raise the risk of haemorrhoids – also known as piles.
“Haemorrhoids are a collection of veins in and out of the anus,” she said.
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“Everyone has haemorrhoids. We are born with them.
“The act of sitting and straining as you scroll can cause the haemorrhoids to engorge with blood, causing symptoms such as pain, swelling or bleeding.”
She advised: “If a bowel movement is not produced after a couple minutes on the john, don’t force it.
“Instead, get up and go do something else. When you have the urge to go again, you may return to the toilet.”
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This is backed by the NHS, which says: “Do not spend more time than you need to on the toilet.”
It also advises against pushing “too hard” when pooing.
Symptoms of haemorrhoids can include:
- Bright red blood after you poo
- An itchy anus
- Feeling like you still need to poo after going to the toilet
- Mucus in your underwear or on toilet paper after wiping your bottom
- Lumps around your anus
- Pain around your anus.
If you have piles, a pharmacist can advise on creams to use.
The NHS advises seeing a doctor if symptoms do not improve in seven days or you keep getting haemorrhoids.
Potential haemorrhoids are not the only reason why you shouldn’t carry your phone to the toilet.
Bacteria can contaminate the device, then transferring the germs to your hands.
A study, published in Germs journal in 2017, revealed that mobile phones belonging to high school students harbour “high levels” of bacteria including E.coli and other microbes.
E.coli can cause diarrhoea, stomach cramps and a fever as well as bloody diarrhoea.
In 2015/16 it accounted for 5,500 NHS patient deaths.
Dr Marcos Del Rosario, a urologist at Clinic CERACOM in Campeche, Mexico, told Healthline that washing hands is key.
He added: “Grown adults still don’t know how to wash their hands. I see it all the time in public bathrooms.”
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