It’s estimated as many as 16 million American adults suffer from occasional constipation, including one-third of adults over 60 – making it the most common digestive problem in the country. Methods of self-treatment for constipation can help, including changing your diet, drinking more fluids, regular exercise, and taking laxatives and stool softeners.
Another effective way to help relieve the symptoms of constipation, hemorrhoids, and irritable bowel disease - that you may not know about - involves using a toilet stool. In this article, we’ll explain what a toilet stool is, the best types and brands, and how to choose one for your specific needs.
What Is a Toilet Stool?
A toilet stool is just as its name suggests; it’s a small stool that you put your feet on when sitting on the toilet and having a bowel movement. Using a toilet stool positions your body in more of a natural squatting position where the knees are above the hips. By changing your posture on the toilet, people have reported going more quickly, straining less, and emptying their bowels more completely, which can help relieve constipation and hemorrhoids.
Having a bowel movement the traditional way – with knees at a 90-degree angle to the torso – can cause a bend in the rectum that makes having a complete bowel movement more difficult.
Studies on toilet stools have discovered the colon can extend more fully in a squatting position to support a more natural bowel movement. An Ohio State University study of 52 healthy participants found that 90% of the respondents reported less straining while having a bowel movement, while 71% said they had faster bowel movements.
Anyone, though, can benefit from better positioning while going No. 2, including children whose feet often cannot reach the floor when they’re sitting on the toilet.
Toilet Stool Features
Toilet stools come in a variety of colors, materials, and styles. Here are a few things to consider before purchasing toilet stools for your home:
Check the weight limit of the toilet stool before you buy it to ensure it can handle the weight of everyone in your home. For example, the Pool Stool Adult Toilet Stool can hold up to 500 pounds. However, some toilet stools can only hold up to 300 pounds.
According to Amazon, toilet stools are relatively inexpensive, as the vast majority of them cost between $20 and $40. The most expensive toilet stool listed on the site is the TUSHY Ottoman, a premium toilet stool listed for $69.
Foldable or Portable
Some toilet stools are designed to be either portable or foldable. This comes in handy when you’re traveling or want to store it when you’re not using it
Most toilet stools have a maximum height of 7 or 8 inches, with 7 inches considered the standard height. Some stools offer a height capacity of 9 inches, which is ideal for shorter people or children.
Best Brands & Models of Toilet Stools
Five of the most highly rated brands and models of toilet stools on Amazon include:
Squatty Potty Simple Bathroom Stool
With a 4.7 rating out of 5, based on more than 38,000 reviews, the Squatty Potty Simple Bathroom Stool has been reviewed more than any other type of toilet stool. This doctor-recommended stool features a 7-inch maximum height with a price listing of just $19.99, making it incredibly cost-effective.
AmazerBath 7 Inches Bamboo Toilet Stool for Bathroom
With a price of $37.99 on Amazon, the AmazerBath Toilet Stool is more expensive than many other models but comes with several noteworthy features. It’s manufactured with durable bamboo material and comes with a non-installation and collapsible design.
Affheny Toilet Stool
The plastic Affheny Toilet Stool is both collapsible and detachable, giving you twice as much space. It has a maximum height of 7 inches and can hold up to 600 pounds, making it one of the most durable stools on the market. It costs just $21.99, making it incredibly affordable.
BIILM Squatting Toilet Stool
The BIILM Squatting Toilet Stool is another top seller. It’s manufactured with 100% quality natural bamboo, which makes it safe for humans and easy to clean. It has a height of 8 inches and is easily foldable with the bush of a button. Amazon lists it for $29.99.
Step and Go Toilet Stool
With a cost of $14.99, the Step and Go Toilet Stool is the cheapest listed on Amazon, but it’s also one of the most popular. It has an average rating of 4.7 out of 5, based on nearly 28,000 reviews. This plastic model stool has a height of 7 inches and is the No. 1 recommended brand by doctors and colon hydrotherapists, according to the listing on Amazon.
Where to Buy Toilet Stools (Online & In-Store)
Amazon has dozens of models listed for sale on its website from all of the major brands. Amazon provides a full description of each model, including its features and price point. You can also buy directly from the manufacturer’s sites. Most big-box hardware stores such as Home Depot, Lowe’s, and Menards also offer bathroom stools if you prefer to see and touch the product in person.
How to Choose the Best Toilet Stool for Your Needs
Choosing a toilet stool comes down to personal preference. If you’re a taller adult or have less flexibility, a 7-inch toilet stool might better suit your needs. Meanwhile, taller stools with a height of 8 or 9 inches or better for short people and children.
Make sure you read the toilet stool’s reviews before making a purchase and take into account the overall star rating of each model. Many users also prefer a foldable model that can easily be stored away when not in use to create more space in your bathroom.
Finally, choose a toilet stool that matches your bathroom’s aesthetics. Many people prefer bamboo because of its classic appearance.
If you’re suffering from frequent constipation or other digestive issues, consider buying a toilet stool to help promote a more natural squatting position when you’re having a bowel movement. With a cost between $20 and $40 for each model, there is a wide range of quality toilet stools available.