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Why Do Your Feet Fall Asleep on the Toilet?


Let’s be honest… we all love to take our sweet time in the bathroom.

We used to bring reading material into the bathroom, to use that time to catch up on your summer reading list, sometimes looking over the newspaper, or Pop-Culture gossip magazine!

Personally, if you are walking into the bathroom with reading material or an iPad… we all know…this isn't going to be a quick trip.

Put up the “Do Not Disturb” sign… this is going to be a minute.

The unfortunate thing about this short restroom vacation… is the eventual numb and tingly “pins and needles” sensation we all get in our legs.

Much like the Apollo Theater’s infamous “Sandman” – who dances bad performers off the stage…

Our body is telling us… “Wrap it up!”

We figured, since great bathroom experiences are kind of our thing here at POTTYMINTS...

We would give you a little “Potty Training” and let you know the answer to the question we have all been thinking about…

Why Do Your Legs Fall Asleep on the Toilet?

There are many questions in life we leave unanswered…

Which came first: The chicken or the egg?

Do bald people get dandruff?

Where do missing socks go?

But we have made it our job… nay… our duty (#punintended)

…To get to the bottom of our initial question: Why Do Your Legs Fall Asleep on the Toilet?

All joking aside, for an accurate answer, we asked Niket Sonpal, MD, a gastroenterologist, for an answer and here is what he had to say…

"This happens when we strain to push during a bowel movement, increasing pressure within the abdomen and raising the spinal column's pressure," Dr. Sonpal says.

"This pressure can sometimes cause the spinal discs to move against nerves in the spine, leading to numbness, weakness and tingling" in the legs and feet, he explains.

Basically, when you practice poor posture while seated on the toilet… and we know the culprit: Cell Phones.

We all love slouching or slumping over our phones while we are on the toilet… for some odd reason, we find it more comfortable.

But this poor toilet posture hinders blood flow to the nerves in your pelvis, which stretch down to your feet, explaining why some people feel tingling in their toes!

What's more, this pins-and-needles problem just gets worse if you camp out on the toilet for too long, Dr. Sonpal says.

The longer you sit… the more numb your get.

So maybe hold off on watching Martin Scorsese's "The Irishman"...

Here are our Tips for Preventing "Pins and Needles" in Your Legs

1. Do Not Slouch

Don't Slouch on the Toilet

As strange as it may seem, it’s best to practice good posture in life… but especially on the toilet!

You want your colon to completely relax, so putting unnecessary pressure on the pelvis by slouching doesn’t help.

Instead, Dr. Sonpal recommends sitting upright with your knees higher than your hips (you can even try a toilet stool for those that need a little more assistance).

2. Do Not Check Your Phone

Don't bring your phone into bathroom

Don’t give yourself a reason to slouch… don’t bring your phone!

Not only is using your phone in the bathroom gross, but fun fact… the average smartphone screen is dirtier than a toilet seat.

Do yourself a favor and keep your phone in your pocket…

3. Do Not Linger

Don't linger on the toilet 

Trust us, we know about the psychological benefit of bathroom breaks throughout the workday. This may upset some of you, but the bathroom experience should take between 5 to 15 minutes max.

Ideally, the bathroom experience should be quick, easy and effortless – so if you are struggling, you are doing something wrong.