NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — It’s something that is happening all over the US, people are rushing to their local grocery stores, supermarkets, and wholesalers and emptying the shelves of non-perishables and other items. But one thing that seems to be on the top of every shopper’s list is toilet paper.
Social media has been rife with memes about the public’s seemingly insatiable appetite for toilet paper during the COVID-19 pandemic. Many shoppers who simply need to refresh their supply of this staple are left empty-handed as others hoard what supplies are available. While you may need to hunker down and quarantine yourself for a couple of weeks, it’s time to ask a very important question. How much toilet paper do you actually need to get through 2 weeks?
The answer to that question, of course, will vary from person to person. Some may require a little more than others. Women also use more toilet paper than men on average. If you have certain medical conditions, such as Crohn’s Disease, you may need more than the average person. But how much toilet paper use is average? Scientists at MIT have thought of that.
According to MIT researchers, the average roll of toilet paper in the most used room in the home will last five days. The average person will go through 42 rolls of two-ply or 21 rolls of one-ply over the course of a single year.
So if you’re wondering how much you should buy, you probably only need one roll per week of two-ply toilet paper for each member of your household. For a 4-person family, you can expect to use 8 rolls over a two week period. So if you buy a 12-pack, you’ll likely have a few rolls to spare after a couple of weeks. If you prefer one-ply, you’ll only need one-half of a roll per person in your household for a week. Meaning you’ll need even less toilet paper to get by during a quarantine.
It’s also important to remember that COVID-19 is not a gastrointestinal virus, so your toilet paper use is unlikely to be increased even if you do contract the virus. So if you are on the hunt for toilet paper, buy what you need for a few weeks, and leave the rest for everyone else who also needs toilet paper.
Stay with News 2 for continuing coverage of the COVID-19 Pandemic.