A bathroom break is an activity where those in an organized gathering are given the opportunity to use the bathroom. You can usually see this being practiced in schools at recess or lunchtime. Teachers give permission for the students to use the bathroom for a certain amount of time. Bathroom breaks are deemed to be very beneficial and convenient for people, but how does this affect our health?
Bathroom Breaks & Your Health
How bathroom breaks affect your health
Bathroom breaks are a vital need in our workplace and lifestyle because it helps us do actions necessary to maintain our health. Having a bathroom break allows us to relieve ourselves or release our body wastes. If we are not given a chance to remove our body waste and fluids, complications can arise in our bodies. This is especially true in the urinary system and digestive system. More than that, a bathroom break is has added value as "me-time" rest, allowing us to space out and relax.
Bathroom breaks are beneficial to our emotional and mental health. Other than that, these breaks also allow us to disinfect and wash our hands. This is a very effective practice in maintaining cleanliness. Therefore, having bathroom breaks is a good way of promoting hygienic practices and cleanliness in our place.
Why are bathroom breaks necessary?
The need for bathroom breaks differs by individual, from frequency throughout the day to the length of time. There are instances where you have an employee who is pregnant and pees a lot or an employee suffering from a medical condition. If you do not allow employees to take bathroom breaks they need, this may cause them to develop illnesses. As a result, they will then be absent from work in order to recover their fragile immune system.
Not getting enough bathroom breaks
Having an irregular bathroom break can significantly affect one's ability to work due to the needs of their bladder and bowel. Like teachers, taxi drivers, and nurses, most employees are not getting enough bathroom breaks when they need to. Teachers must look over and supervise their students at all times. Therefore, getting a bathroom break is risky for them. This is especially true if they are looking after children or toddlers.
Based on a survey administered in Iowa, most teachers avoid using the bathroom by consuming less water or any other types of beverages to last longer in class. Nurses often show signs of complications in the urinary system. This is a result of not getting enough time to use the bathroom in their work premises. They avoid using the bathroom because they have to cater to the needs of their patients and have to do their rounds in the hospital. Transportation drivers also have it hard with bathroom breaks. Most of them are at risk of getting complications in their urinary system because they seldom go to the bathroom as they often spend their time traveling from one place to another. The inaccessibility of public restroom facilities also impacts transportation drivers, like delivery drivers, ride-sharing drivers, carpool drivers, etc., who have a difficult time relieving themselves.
These are just some of the workers that are not getting enough time and opportunity to go to the bathrooms. Other workers, such as soldiers, doctors, windowpane cleaners, etc., are having complications in their bodies due to irregular bathroom breaks.
Acknowledging the importance of bathroom breaks
It is essential to have enough bathroom breaks as needed. Suppose you ever encounter an issue regarding breaks being too short or only being granted a few breaks. In that case, you can try to discuss how breaks can be improved within the company. You may also try contacting the state health department of the company for more information on the requirements for granting access to bathroom breaks. You can also learn how you can file a report if you are not getting a bathroom break and your bathroom needs are being denied.
Overall, having these breaks at your workplace is essential. Having a regular bathroom break highly benefits your overall health. Not only that but also the cleanliness of the work setting and the workers will also be maintained. Many kinds of diseases and complications will be avoided with the help of a break, so do not hesitate to open this topic at work if you ever feel like you are not getting enough bathroom breaks as you need.
Additional Reading: Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Restroom Break Laws
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