Guide to Using Enemas Safely

Posted by Serena Zhang on

What Is an Enema?

An enema is a device that usually consists of a tube and a bag. They are often also called anal douches, although douches are small bulb-shaped pumps that clean your rectum a bit. Enemas go a little deeper than that. Its tube is meant to be put into your anus while the bag is filled up with a mixture of liquids known as an enema solution. Using the natural force of gravity to aid you, you allow the solution to flow through the tube and into your rectum.

The more solution you use, the further into your body the mixture reaches, sometimes even all the way to the joint of your upper intestine and colon. There are some techniques to this, though, as your colon is very long and frames your torso at right angles, making the liquid flow around the corners a little difficult. Once you have sufficiently filled yourself with the solution, you simply wait 5 to 15 minutes, then let it pass back out, bringing all the bacteria and poop residue out.

How to Safely Use an Enema

While putting a tube up your butt and squeezing some water in sounds simple, there is a bit of a technique that might not be as obvious at first. Your main aim during an enema is to achieve peristalsis, an involuntary spasm of the muscles along the colon. This causes the fluids to move in wavelike motions, pushing all of the toxins toward your rectum.

Simply squeezing the bag will force the water in, and you'll reach your capacity much sooner than you would otherwise. This is due to the rectum's reaction to water entering it too quickly. If you go too quickly, you may achieve peristalsis but only in your rectal muscles.

Any extra solution you add after this point will simply be pushing against your body while it tries to push the mixture back out. You want the water to move slowly and steadily, gradually increasing the pressure inside your rectum and colon.

You accomplish this (in most cases) by elevating the enema bag much higher than your anus, allowing gravity to help you. Once you get the initial movement of the water underway, the force of gravity should help you to keep it moving until the entire bag has been used.

Many enema kits will include hooks and are designed for use in this exact way, allowing you to set up the bag where you plan to use it, then get comfortable and prepared before inserting the tube. They usually have a tap or valve, allowing you to control the liquid flow entering your rectum. An experience you can tailor to your personal preferences.

Getting comfortable is incredibly important to the process of taking an enema. If you've been regularly using your butt plugs, you'll have a little bit of an advantage as you'll be used to having things inside your rectum for an extended period.

Even so, the process differs greatly from almost everything else you might experience, and relaxation is key. If you aren't relaxed, the muscles from your anus to your lower intestine can tense up. Tensing usually leads to closing when it comes to your butt, so it could make it much more difficult for you to actually get the solution where it needs to go.

Most people will lie down while they take their enemas. You can lie in almost any position, so pick whatever you find most comfortable. Where you do it can make a difference, too. Some people like to have theirs in a comfortable space, like a living room, where they can get natural light on their body while they lie and cleanse.

But, once you get the water flowing, there's no telling where it's going! So be sure to keep enough towels nearby and avoid doing your enema anywhere you don't want to make a mess. If you're worried about the mess, it might be best to go for the bathroom floor.

After you secure a comfortable position, insert the tube into your anus. A little lube might help if you have some trouble inserting it. Once the tube is in, open the tap or valve and let the solution start to fill you up.

If, at any point, you feel in pain for more than a minute or so, you should stop and empty the mixture back out. If you need to, you can start over once the pain subsides. Continuing while in pain will not only be incredibly uncomfortable but may also cause some damage to your sensitive internal muscles.

The key to an effective enema administration is to take your time, only adding small amounts of solution at a time. Cramping can be a large problem during your enema, but usually, it will pass if you rest for around a minute before adding more solution. Once you reach the point where cramping is so bad you can't take it anymore, you should stop and allow your bowels to empty back out.

Making Sure the Solution Gets Where It Needs to Be...

As the colon forms a frame all around your torso, it also extends in several different directions. Getting the solution to the farthest parts of your colon can sometimes be a bit of a challenge.

Some people like to change positions mid-enema to help the solution along. Once the initial upwards part of your colon is filled, the mixture needs to move from the left-hand side to the right-hand side of your body. Lying on your right-hand side once you reach this point can allow the liquid to flow where you need it to naturally.

Massaging your stomach can also be a big help. Do it in a similar way that you would if you felt bloated and were trying to move things along, just in the other direction.

Benefits of Using an Enema

As I mentioned earlier, some people use enemas even if they don't engage in anal activity, but why?

Enemas can do wonders for your health. They can give relief from constipation if you regularly suffer from it. They can wash out all kinds of not-so-nice bacteria from your colon.

They can even make you fly! Okay, the last one is a lie, but you might be able to see why these little bags of liquid have developed somewhat of a cult following.

Obviously, when you are about to put your favorite butt plug in there, the benefits are a little more apparent. Ever had to clean a little bit (or a lot) of fecal matter from your plug after you've finished having your fun?

That's because your rectum is essentially a holding area for all the poop waiting to leave your body. When you empty your bowels in the bathroom, most of your poop will exit the body, but some smaller pieces might not quite make the trip. When you use an enema, you make sure that all these little bits can escape and that no surprises are waiting for you or your plug.

Another benefit to pre-anal enemas, which I don't see discussed too often, is that it can help your body prepare for what's to come. If you've ever poured liquid into a water balloon, you'll have seen how water will fill up the entire container you put it in, whatever the shape.

It works the same in your rectum; the water will get everywhere, filling up all the harder-to-reach gaps and cracks. Then, just like a water balloon, as you pump more and more water in, the pressure will increase, and your rectum will begin to stretch out a bit. It's a similar effect to using a smaller plug before moving onto bigger ones. The enema itself can give you a nice anal warm-up before your session.

Enema Solutions

There is a wide range of different types of enema solutions you can choose from to cleanse your colon. Which you go for will depend on exactly what you are trying to achieve from it. For the most basic function of cleaning yourself out before some anal play, a simple water enema should be just fine.

The water should be slightly above body temperature, around 98 to 105 F. Using too cold water may cause extra contractions, making it harder to complete the enema. Water that is too hot could burn your rectum and colon. And trust me, you don't want that.

You might think, "If I go through all this trouble, I may as well do it properly". This could lead you on a journey through all the different kinds of enema solutions available. One popular type is a coffee enema.

It might be surprising, but this is exactly what it sounds like. People will boil coffee beans, allow the coffee to cool, and use their enema bags to pump it through their colons. There are two important chemicals in this process — caffeine and palmitic acid. These chemicals are intended to reach your liver and assist with bile production in the colon to aid in cleaning it out. If a coffee enema sounds like something you'd want to try, you'll want to check out the available blends with high caffeine and palmitic acid.

If Coffee Isn't Your Idea of a Good Cleanse, There Are Plenty of Other Options. These include:

  • Acidophilus enemas. These enemas use probiotic yogurt in the mixture to allow the good bacteria to access your colon directly.
  • Epsom salt enemas. Epsom salts are often used to relax muscles and can be taken orally to relax the bowels and help move things along. Using them in an enema helps your colon draw more water into it, thoroughly cleansing your colon.
  • Lemon juice enemas. Lemon enemas are more effective at cleansing the colon than other types, but due to the nature of the juice, they are sometimes much more difficult to hold in your colon.
  • Milk and molasses enemas. These enemas produce a lot of gas in your colon due to their sugary nature. The gas helps move everything along, and the mixture is very good at causing peristalsis. They can end up being quite messy, though, so having some towels on hand is a good idea.
  • Saline enemas. The salt content in these enemas stimulates your colon to draw more water into it, helping move along harder or more compact stools.

All these different types of enema are delivered slightly above body temperature, just like a plain old water enema.

Are Enemas Safe?

So far, we've done nothing but discuss the good sides of enemas, but it's important to know it's not all roses. The thorny parts of the enema process can cause serious damage throughout your body if you don't follow the proper procedure. Knowing the risks matters if you plan on using an enema before your butt play.

As long as you are careful when you perform an enema and don't overdo it, there shouldn't be any lasting negatives from colon cleansing.

You should pay particular attention to the ingredients used in pre-made enema solutions. Senna is the ingredient you should pay the closest attention to. This herb-based ingredient can cause diarrhea and dehydration. As you continue having liquid bowel movements, your body will lose even more water, worsening dehydration. Long term, this can cause severe health problems like kidney or heart failure.

Perhaps the most important point to cover is to be careful with the pressure you allow into your colon. If you attach your colon kit directly to a tap, the pressure of the water moving into your body is almost certain to perforate your colon. If it happens, you'll need surgery to repair this and possibly a colostomy bag for the rest of your life. So, you don't want too much pressure, but how much is too much?

It's difficult to put a precise measurement on it, but the higher you hang your enema bag, the greater the pressure will be. You should hang the bag around 2 to 3 feet off the ground. The ideal height is for the liquid to be just about flowing down the tube so it can enter your rectum slowly. Depending on the thickness of the enema solution, you may have to raise or lower the bag to get the right flow going.

Other dangers tend to come from the type of solution you choose to use. In general, and like most things in life, if you don't overdo it, you should be fine. If you consistently and very regularly use the same kind of enema, though, there can be negative effects.

For example, frequently using coffee-based enemas can cause damage to the liver due to the other toxic chemicals found in the grain. It can also slowly take iron out of your body leading to a deficiency if you use them too often. Overuse of Epsom salt enemas can cause hypermagnesemia due to the high level of magnesium found in the salt. Overdoing soda-based enemas can unbalance your body's pH, causing excess alkalinity in your colon. Whichever solution you decide to use, make sure you research and know the possible risks.

Should I Use an Enema Before My Butt Plugs?

There's a lot to take in with enemas, no pun intended. They definitely have their place in a thorough anal cleansing routine. I don't think I'd recommend having one every single time you use your butt plugs, but having one every now and again to clear out any leftover poo isn't going to hurt.

Personally, I'd avoid some of the more alternative versions of enema solutions. The old-fashioned enema has been around since ancient times and is helpful with all kinds of medication when oral administration isn't an option. This kind of enema has fewer negative effects, whereas some of the alternative solutions have proven downsides. Just be sure to know exactly what you're putting in your rectum, just like you would with your plugs. If you aren't sure it'll be safe, err on caution and don't use it.

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