We get it: you’re a stand-up kinda guy in all aspects of your life, and that includes standing up when you urinate. It’s considered to be the manly thing to do. However, researchers are suggesting that some men should sit when they pee because it can be much healthier for them. In fact, there could be an argument for asking all men to sit when peeing—which will be addressed as well.
Why older men should sit when they pee
As men age, the risk of having an enlarged prostate (aka, benign prostatic hyperplasia, BPH) increases significantly. The typical urinary tract symptoms associated with BPH include urinary frequency, urinary urgency, and difficulty emptying the bladder completely. Sitting when urinating can help relieve these symptoms and make it easier to empty the bladder.
A 2014 review and meta-analysis from the Netherlands, for example, reported on the differences between standing and sitting when urinating among healthy men and men with BPH and the influence on lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS). Data from eleven studies were evaluated.
The reviewers discovered that among men with BPH and LUTS who sat when urinating, there was significantly lower post-void residual volume than among men who stood. Men who sat also showed improvements in maximum urinary flow rate and voiding time when compared with men who peed standing up. Among healthy men, however, these characteristics were similar between men who sat and those who stood.
Apart from these findings, sitting when urinating can reduce the tendency for development cysts and other health complications associated with urinary tract problems.
Should younger men sit when they pee?
Because an enlarged prostate is primarily a problem experienced by older men, younger men will not likely experience any benefits to their prostates by choosing to sit rather than stand. However, there are at least two other reasons why all men should consider sitting when peeing.
One has to do with hygiene. Standing when urinating boosts the stream velocity, which also raises the risk of splattering urine onto the toilet and the floor, which contributes to a less-hygienic bathroom.
The second reason is related to the first, but it’s more about relationships. Practicing good bathroom etiquette is not only more sanitary; it also demonstrates more consideration and courtesy for your spouse/partner. Most men are a bad aim at least some of the time, and sitting down eliminates that problem.
De Jong Y et al. Urinating standing versus sitting: position is of influence in men with prostate enlargement. A systematic review and meta-analysis. PLoS 2014 Jul 22