Remember the Big Bang Theory where Howard has a blind date and doesn’t react well to some spicy food so he clogs the toilet and climbs out the bathroom window of his date’s apartment in embarrassment? Even the smallest room in your house can leave a big impression. A new survey commissioned by Gut Inspired, a group of Canadians living with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), revealed that 61% of Canadians are not comfortable doing.. their business at a friend’s house.

For the more than 233,000 Canadians living with IBD – Crohn’s disease or Ulcerative Colitis – waiting until you get home isn’t always an option. During a symptom flare, people living with these chronic disease often have to use the washroom up to 20 times per day.

How can we make all guests, including those living with IBD, feel more comfortable? Gut Inspired’s survey indicated that these five things can make the difference between a positive and not-so-positive bathroom experience:

  1. Have a square to spare:  To stack up as a host, make sure you stock up. 34% of Canadians said that running out of toilet paper while using a friend’s bathroom was their biggest loo-related worry.
  2. Second to well-stocked supplies, an obvious guest hand towel was next on the list of “must-haves”. Don’t force guests to air dry or resort to using your used bath towel.
  3. Keep it clean: The majority of Canadians claimed that poor cleanliness was the worst thing they’ve encountered in a friend’s bathroom. Don’t be that friend; scrub before socializing and keep a garbage can in plain view so guests can help you keep it that way.
  4. Think beyond the obvious:  Leave the clogs to the Dutch. Respondents ranked a plunger above both a fan and a candle.
  5. Be scent-sitive: When using a friend’s bathroom, the majority of people are most concerned about leaving a funny smell. Light a candle, leave some air freshener out and fix that fan before your next dinner party or book club meeting.
  6. Lastly, if you have the funds for a bathroom reno, the top two items Canadians would like in their dream bathroom are a hands-free faucet and soap dispenser (33%) and a self-cleaning, high-tech Japanese toilet (30%).Although, with these items in your guest bathroom, your guests might decide to just move in!