top of page

TOILET TROUBLES: When you've got to go you've got to go BUT PARKING CAN BE THE REAL ISSUE!

One of the biggest issues with being a taxi driver, along with dealing with overly intoxicated passengers and traffic, is finding access to public toilets.

This being an issue which most take for granted, for a taxi driver it can at times seem impossible to find a public toilet which is open and easy to access. In London in particular, a number of public toilets have now been closed, making that dash for the toilet touch and go at times.

In a healthy adult, NHS medical advice suggests that occasionally holding in urine will not cause problems, but if this behaviour becomes a habit, there could be some unwanted effects.

Finding a toilet which is open and usable isn’t the only problem, finding somewhere to park when you’ve found a rest room can be just as difficult.

With more and more restrictions put in place against parking in some of the UK’s busiest cities, along with so many cycle lanes being built and meaning there is no curb side stopping, drivers can spend more time circulating, trying to find a parking spot than they do finding accessible toilets.

What you will find is, most licensing authorities do indeed list a number of locations in which a driver can access public toilet facilities, but there is not any information about where a driver can park nearby and leave their cab while using those facilities.

Rest ranks are a great place to park for cabbies, but with limited locations, there’s no guarantees you will access a free spot when needed. And as we all know, when you’ve got to go, you’ve got to go.

When the bladder fills around halfway with fluid, it sends a signal to the brain letting the person know that it’s time to head to the rest room. We don’t really have control of when this may be, so it can definitely catch you out at times.

That’s when it’s time to hunt down one of those illusive public toilets with parking available nearby. How long this may take, well that can vary from day to day for all cabbies around the UK.

But what are the possible effects of being caught short on a regular basis and holding in your urine for long periods of time? According to experts in this field and government advice, these are some of the side effects, as well as issues to look out for.

People who regularly hold in their urine for long periods of time may feel pain or discomfort in the bladder or kidneys.

Urinary tract infection

In some cases, holding in urine can cause bacteria to multiply. This can lead to UTIs. Symptoms of a UTI can include a burning or stinging feeling during urination, pain in the pelvis or lower abdomen, a constant urge to empty the bladder, cloudy off-coloured urine or bloody urine.

Bladder stretching

In the long term, holding in your urine can lead to your bladder becoming stretched. This could make it difficult for the bladder to contract and release urine as it would normally.

Pelvic floor muscle damage

Pelvic floor muscles can become damaged if you hold in your urine for long periods. This can lead to incontinence issues.

Kidney stones

Kidney stones can form in people who are known to hold in their urine for long periods of time on a regular basis. Kidney stones can be very painful.

Advice by Very Well Health, to help those of you who are caught short and unable to access public toilets, includes:

  • Moving into a more comfortable position if possible – Putting pressure on the abdomen can increase the sensation of ‘Busting’, so finding a position where this doesn’t happen can help.

  • Change your temperature – Feeling cold can increase the urge to release urine. Turn the heating up to help while searching for a toilet.

  • Think about the bladder being closed off – it may help to imagine that nothing can come down urinal track. Also squeezing the muscles in that area can help avoid any urine leaking out.

  • Stay still – Bouncing or jiggling could actually increase the sensation of having to go to the rest room. Decreasing movement could help reduce the feeling and by you some much needed minutes.

  • Meditation or visualisation – Practicing meditation, visualisation or deep breathing may help distracting from the feeling or urgently needing to go toilet.

  • Mental distractions - Talking to someone or singing along to your favourite track can help take your mind off the urge momentarily.

Remember every second counts in this situation.

Whatever your current strategy is when dealing with the issue of finding an accessible toilet when needed, it’s best to remember that it’s better out than in. Never pass up on the opportunity to use a rest room.

If you have any concerns surrounding the issues raised in this article, don’t hesitate to contact your doctor for more advice. Remember, health over wealth.


Subscribe to our newsletter. Receive all the latest news

Thanks for subscribing!

thumbnail_phonto (1).jpg
bottom of page