An age-old question…tough one to answer

“Do you know why running water gives one an urge to urinate?”

Among several questions asked by a new HSI member named John, that one jumped out.

Excellent question. And a tough one to answer.

After casting around through various websites, one thing is clear: A lot of people have opinions on the topic, but none have a rock solid answer–none that I came across anyway.

The most common theory is that running water prompts urgency because we so strongly associate urination with the sound of urine hitting a pool of water.

That seems logical, but I have my doubts.

My friend who has a 19-month-old tells me that when he gives his son a shower, the boy starts urinating the moment the water is turned on. And we know that the tyke (still in diapers) has never peed into a toilet.

I’m guessing this one might have to be classified along with the mystery of why a yawn prompts another person to yawn.

Anyone have a theory? Or maybe a firm answer? We’d all like to know!

To Your Good Health,

Jenny Thompson