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A travel bidet is a portable personal cleansing device made for men, as well as women. Often used by travelers, a portable bidet is a device used to clean private body parts in lieu of using toilet paper. Although some are battery operated, many are simple bottles, with nozzle attachments that can be discreetly carried in a purse or a backpack. In countries where bathrooms are not normally equipped with a built-in bidet, many people have opted to use a travel bidet for daily use at home, as well.
Sometimes referred to as a portable douche or a bidet hand shower, a travel bidet can be purchased from online vendors or may be found in places where personal hygiene products are sold. While there are several types of bidets, one of the most convenient is a simple rubber bottle, which can be filled with warm water and used to cleanse the private areas after elimination. A travel bidet such as this simply requires the user to aim an attached reservoir at the desired area and squeeze to create enough water flow to remove any residual waste.
Many prefer a travel bidet over the use of toilet tissue for personal hygiene. Urinary tract infections and other bacterial infections are sometimes believed to be linked to toilet tissue spreading bacteria in unwanted places. Although tissue is used to pat dry after using a travel bidet, many believe the use of these devices to be far superior in terms of cleanliness to that of toilet tissue.
A portable bidet can also be useful to individuals with disabilities that do not allow a person to comfortably clean otherwise. Many are sold to individuals who have a hard time cleaning due to limitations in mobility caused by injury or disease. Some are even battery operated to increase water pressure without a person needing to squeeze the device to initiate water flow. Most also come with discreet carrying pouches and wrist straps for easy carrying.
Some also prefer to use a travel bidet for environmental reasons. By avoiding the use of toilet tissue as often as possible, paper is conserved, which means that fewer natural resources are used to manufacture such products. A travel bidet is reusable and only uses a small amount of water, which, for many, makes it an even better alternative than a bidet attachment on a home toilet, which may use more water for cleansing.
@Iluviaporos - I actually find that a bidet is cleaner than using toilet tissue anyway. It might not seem that way since you are possibly going to be using your hand in places you might not really want it to go, but afterwards you're going to be washing that hand in soap anyway, right?
And the article is right, toilet tissue does tend to just move bacteria around, while the water actually washes it away.
Plus it is far better for the environment, particularly if you are in a developing country, where they don't have sophisticated sewers designed to take a lot of toilet tissue.
Honestly, I swore I would never use one, but I was completely converted on my trip. The only problem is getting used to toilet tissue again when you come home. I found it almost painfully scratchy after that.
A travel bidet is much closer to what the local folk use in many countries. When I was traveling in Africa, you often didn't have the option of using toilet tissue, because there wasn't any. Unless you were willing to carry several rolls around with you (and since we were carrying our luggage on our backs this wasn't a very attractive option).
So if you are used to using a bidet, you won't ever have to worry about that. And, I mean, if you are traveling on a bus that's been delayed in the middle of nowhere and there are no public toilets so you have to use the local hole in the ground... you'll be very grateful to know how to use a bidet.