When giving yourself an enema at home, it may be helpful if you are assisted by a close friend. It's easy for you to give an enema to someone who needs assistance as well. Knowing how to give an enema correctly and safely allows you to contribute to healthier digestion while cleansing out excess fecal matter. Giving an enema at home is also a cost-friendly alternative to irrigation clinics and other doctors' visits.
Fill the enema bag with a warm solution of water and salt. For example a 2 qt. bag of water requires 2 tbsp. of salt.
Get in a comfortable position either sitting on your toilet, or standing with one knee elevated. There are also other positions you can get into to make it more comfortable. The Ohio State University Medical Center states that you should lay on your side, and other sources say to get down on all fours with a pillow under your chest. This step all depends on how your body is comfortable while taking the enema.
Apply a liberal amount of personal lubricant to the enema applicator and to the opening of your rectum. Aim the tip of the applicator upward and at an angle toward the direction of your back, much like one would insert a tampon. Push the tip into your rectum and slide it in about 3 inches, or until the hilt stops you.
Unclamp the tubing that releases water from the enema bag. Keep the enema bag elevated for optimal water pressure. Clamp the tubing once you feel full of the solution. Keep your rectal muscles clamped to hold the solution inside. Alternatively, if you are using a plunger enema, squeeze the rubber bladder with the applicator inside of your rectum.
Release your bowels after you have held the solution inside of you for as long as possible. This can be anywhere from 5 to 10 minutes.
- If you are giving an enema to assist someone, do this slowly. Clamp the tube or stop squeezing the bladder of a squeeze enema if the person complains of cramps. Continue once the cramps subside, as this is a normal occurrence.
Items you will need
- Enema bag or plunger
- 2 tbsp. salt
- 2 qt. distilled water
- Water-based lubricant
- Sterile gloves
- Ohio State University: Giving an Enema
- "The Long Term Care Nursing Assistant"; Peggy A. Grubbs, Barbara A. Blasband; 2004
- Burke/Triolo Productions/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images