Enema Basics

Enema and Douche Bag

by Cat, September 2008  (Image, right, from Amazon)

This article also available as printable pdf file: 7-page: EnemaBasics-v2.pdf; see also 16-page EnemaRecipes-v2.pdf

An enema is an ancient healing method, but it is important to do it correctly. This article provides all the details.

Cautions: 

  1. Do not use enemas for weight control.
  2. While enemas can be very helpful in helping you to detox or relieve constipation, if not done slowly and properly and with clean equipment, they can cause serious problems.
  3. If you are very constipated, or if you have diverticulitis, please seek the assistance of a medical professional.

Enema Basics

I am not a doctor and am not qualified to advise you on your specific health situation. My intent is merely to raise awareness and express opinion.

Always go slowly; do not force the fluid into your colon. If you encounter resistance to water flow, stop the slow and gently massage your abdomen and try again; repeat as necessary.

Always consult a medical professional if you are severely constipated, before performing an enema. And in the future, don’t allow yourself to get so constipated, by using a gentle enema at the first sign of constipation, or by taking herbs for constipation.

An enema is an at-home method of cleansing your colon (large intestine), and helps to rid the body of accumulated toxins. While the enema cleanses only the colon, by stimulating flow of bile and excretion of stool, the enema also encourages the small intestine to move its contents, including any toxins it contains.

Prior to the introduction of pharmaceuticals and routine surgery into medical practice, enemas were very common, considered the first line of defense against disease by helping the body rid itself of toxins. Sadly, today, enemas are given only to relieve constipation.

A typical enema uses a quart of water at body temperature mixed with herbs, coffee or mineral salts. All you need to do an enema are:

  • Enema ingredients, including warm filtered water
  • Enema bag (or a hot water bottle fitted for an enema), available at your local pharmacy.
  • Towels (for cleanup)
  • A Davol colon tube (optional, used for “high enemas”). This is a flexible red rubber tube, 18-30 inches long that attaches to the hard plastic enema tip.
  • Puppy pad (optional), to protect carpets, etc., from accidental spills.
  • Soapy hot water followed by a vinegar & water rinse, to cleanse the enema equipment.

Two types of enema delivery:

  1. Regular enema which uses 1 – 4 cups of fluid and the regular 3″ long colon tip.
  2. High colonic enema, which requires 2 quarts of fluid, and a special tip (the Davol colon tube) that reaches high up into the colon to deliver the water. The colon may be able to take up more water than 2 quarts to be fully distended, but 2 quarts should be enough to cleanse the full length of the colon. (see EnemaKit.com and scroll down to ‘capacity’ for more on this. 

Conditions relieved by enema

See List of Enema Recipes on Natural Healing Remedies Menu for more detail.

Diarrhea: It may sound counter-intuitive to do an enema when you are having diarrhea, but consider this: diarrhea is the body’s attempt to use fluids to flush toxins and microbes from the bowel. Unfortunately, this can lead to dehydration from loss of too much water. Aiding the body by giving a warm-water enema speeds up the detox process, and at the same time, re-hydrates the body.

Constipation: Perhaps the most common bowel problem is constipation, and a Castile soap enema is a good way to clean you out and give relief. Caution: Enemas can cause serious problems, especially if you are very constipated, or if you have diverticulitis. Always go slowly; do not force the fluid into your colon. Allow the fluid to flow until you feel resistance. Then close the valve and gently massage your colon; this may cause a gurgling sensation as blockage shifts in the colon so that the fluid can pass. Once you experience this gurgling, you can try opening the valve again to allow more fluid to flow.

Always consult a medical professional if you are severely constipated, before performing an enema. And in the future, don’t allow yourself to get so constipated, by using a gentle enema at the first sign of constipation, or by taking herbs for constipation.

Spring cleaning: Just as you give your home a good spring cleaning, it’s also a good idea to give your colon a good spring cleaning. I like to do a routine salt-soda enema twice a year, for this purpose. It has the added benefit of stimulating the lymph system to clean itself. For me, it is easy to take up and retain – the salt and soda have a soothing effect on the colon.

Bowel inflammation: if your bowel is sore, overly warm or otherwise shows signs of inflammation, try an aloe vera juice enema. In addition to soothing and healing damaged tissues including the lining of the bowel, aloe vera juice can kill parasitic worms in the bowel and stimulate the muscles of the bowel to help expel them. Aloe also promotes the growth of probiotic bacteria by providing food for them. (15)

Other enemas that are soothing to the bowel are: Green tea enema, slippery elm enema, and also just a plain warm water or salt water enema (see Enema Recipes). See health-information-fitness.com for more ideas (scroll down to “Soothing Enemas”). (16)

Detox & Liver support: One of the best enemas to stimulate release of toxins via the bile is the coffee enema. Note that you should never put more than 1 quart of coffee fluid into your colon; 1 – 2 cups is optimal. After the fluid is inserted, rest and retain the fluid for 10-20 minutes, to give the process time to trigger release of bile. Then expel.

A chlorophyll or wheatgrass enema is alkalizing and provides minerals that can be absorbed to feed the liver; this is an excellent followup to the coffee enema. Adding lemon juice also provides minerals to support the liver. (15)

Parasites: When parasites are present, and especially when they die-off (from treatment), they loose many toxic substances into their environment, which can be picked up by the blood, causing distress. The liver works overtime to detoxify these substances, and can become tired and weak. A good colon cleanse can help the liver rid itself of the toxic substances. One of the best cleanses for this purpose is the coffee enema (see Detox & Liver support, above), which acts to stimulate bile secretion into the small intestine; bile is essential for detox. A coffee enema is also an excellent general colon cleanse for the lower colon.

An enema containing garlic is a good choice if you have parasites (pathogenic bacteria, candida, pinworms, etc.) especially in your large intestine. It’s best to mix some salt into the enema fluids, to help the mucosa shed toxins, and to reduce transfer of water into and out of the cells. The garlic-Epsom salt enema is a good example.

The aloe vera juice enema may also be effective against parasitic worms in the colon (see Bowel inflammation, above).

It also helps to take milk thistle tincture orally during treatment for parasites.

Follow-up:

After giving yourself a cleansing or coffee enema, it’s always good practice to follow with a probiotic enema, to restore probiotics removed by the enema. Restoring probiotics improves your immune system and helps detox. To be most effective, take probiotics both orally and in a retention enema (see next paragraph for examples). See Enema Recipes for probiotic enema instructions.

Most probiotics on the market come from non-human sources and will not implant. They will, however, reside in the colon for a week or more, which can be helpful in acidifying the colon so that your native flora can thrive and grow. While it is possible to get human strains of probiotics, it is not likely they will implant either. Kyo-Dophilus claims to be one such (see iHerb for more info on this product), but the best way to implant human strains is with a stool implant, which must be performed by a doctor.

Also add probiotic capsules or powder to your supplement list for about a week after an enema, and increase your intake of probiotic foods (kefir, lacto-beverages, buttermilk, yogurt, cottage cheese or sour cream with live probiotics, sauerkraut and other lacto- condiments, and fermented cabbage juice).

Another recommended follow-up to a coffee enema is an aloe vera juice enema.

Caveats

One last word of warning: NEVER take enemas for longer than 7 consecutive days, or you will become dependent on enemas for a bowel movement. For acute problems, I prefer to take enemas for 3 – 5 days and then take a 2 day rest before starting another round.

Also, never take enemas as a means of controlling body weight. This is not only physically dangerous but also psychologically damaging.

General instructions for Regular Enemas:

I am not a doctor and am not qualified to advise you on your specific health situation. My intent is merely to raise awareness and express opinion.

You can deliver the fluid while lying down (see High Enemas, below), or standing. Standing is especially handy for the coffee enema, since only a small amount of fluid is inserted for each enema (about 1 cup at a time).

See also: Enema Procedure_detail

What you need:

Enema and Douche Bag

  • The following are included in a standard enema kit as in photo, right:
    • enema bag
    • delivery tube, with clamp
    • standard enema tip (3″)
  • Warm filtered water,
  • Enema additives
  • Bar of soap or liquid Castile soap (to lubricate the tip); can also use KY Jelly, Vaseline or Cold Cream, but be aware they may contain toxic ingredients.

Method:

  1. Find a spot to hang the enema bag so that the bottom of the bag is bout 18 – 24 inches above where your rectum will be. I like to hang the bag from my showerhead and take the enema in the shower. Adjust the clamp on the delivery tube so that you can easily reach it while standing or lying down.
  2. Mix enema solution according to instructions for specific enema (see Enema Recipes).
  3. Open the clamp to let a small amount of fluid flow out (to remove any air in the tube).
  4. Lubricate the tip of the short enema tip. Insert tip into rectum and open the clamp to let the fluid enter. Close the clamp if you start to cramp, or when the bag is empty. When the bag is empty, remove the tip.
  5. Rest for 5 – 20 minutes (I like to rest on a puppy pad in my bed). If doing a coffee enema, rest at least 10 minutes, for the bile duct to release the bile.
  6. While resting, massage your abdomen in clockwise direction: up right side, across below rib cage from right to left, then down on left side, to start the fluid moving out of your body.
  7. Void into the toilet.
  8. Rinse bag, tube and tip thoroughly, then hang to dry completely.

General instructions for High Enemas:

I am not a doctor and am not qualified to advise you on your specific health situation. My intent is merely to raise awareness and express opinion.

Summary: 

You deliver the fluid while lying down on your bed, on your bathroom floor, or in the bathtub. Put down lots of towels or an absorbent pad in case of leakage. Lying down is very important for high enemas, so that the fluid will flow into the upper colon, and to avoid the effect of gravity which could cause the fluid to collect in the bottom of the colon, causing distention and discomfort. For smaller enemas (1 quart or less), you may prefer to stand.

NOTE: for small enemas, 1 quart or less, you do not need to lie down, and you can use either the short enema tip that comes with a hot water bag, or the Davol tube to deliver the fluids. After all the fluid is delivered, I like to lie down in my bed (with a puppy pad) for 5 – 20 minutes, while massaging my abdomen (see step 5, below).

What you need:

  • Enema bag
  • Delivery tube
  • Davol tip
  • Warm filtered water,
  • Enema additives
  • Bar of soap or liquid Castile soap (to lubricate the tip); can also use KY Jelly, Vaseline or Cold Cream, but be aware they may contain toxic ingredients.

Method

  1. Find a spot to hang the enema bag so the bottom of the bag is about 18 – 24 inches above where your rectum will be. Adjust the clamp on the delivery tube so that you can easily reach it while lying down.
  2. Mix enema solution according to instructions for specific enema (see Enema Recipes)
  3. Pour into bag, secure delivery tube and tip. Open the clamp to let a small amount of fluid flow out (to remove any air in the tube).
  4. Lubricate the tip of the Davol tube (I use hand soap). Lie down in your prepared spot (use a puppy pad or other absorbent pad to protect carpeting), with the bag hanging above you and the clamp within reach. Push the Davol tube up into the colon, slowly and gently. When you have about 4″ of it inside, start the fluid flowing slowly; this provides additional lubrication, making it easier to push the tube higher into your colon. You will not feel the tube beyond where it enters the rectum. If you are severely blocked, it may bend back on itself, and then water will flow out. Close the clamp, pull the tube out a bit, and try again.
  5. Once the tube is all in except for about an inch, open the clamp fully and let the fluid flow in. If you start to leak, close the clamp for a few moments and then try again. Once all the fluid is in, massage your abdomen in counter-clockwise circles (up left side, across below rib cage from left to right, then down on the right side, focusing on the corners where the colon has a sharp bend), to move the fluid as far up into the colon as possible.
  6. Remove the enema tip and rest 5 – 20 minutes, to allow the fluid to “soak” the contents of your colon. Toward the end of your rest period, massage your abdomen in clockwise direction (up right side, across below rib cage from right to left, then down on left side), to start the fluid moving out of your body. Void into the toilet; you may get urge to void more than once.
  7. When done voiding, rinse bag, tube and tip thoroughly, then hang to dry completely.

 References

NOTE: I have disabled all CureZone links because they may be contaminated with malware. If you want to try them and they don’t work as written, add the following at the beginning (before curezone.com): “https://www.”; for example, curezone.com becomes https://www.curezone.com

  1. CureZone.com:  see (1a) curezone.com/art/1.asp?C0=818 for index; (1b) curezone.com/cleanse/enema/:  (1c) curezone.com/cleanse/bowel/
  2. Salt & Soda Enema:  curezone.com/art/read.asp?ID=34&db=5&C0=0
  3. History of Coffee Enema:  curezone.com/art/read.asp?ID=29&db=5&C0=0  or http://www.peak-health-now.com/coffee_enema_research.html
  4. Description of Coffee Enema:  curezone.com/art/read.asp?ID=31&db=5&C0=0
  5. Basic Coffee Enema Procedure & Description:  curezone.com/art/read.asp?ID=39&db=5&C0=0
  6. Coffee Enema for Liver Detox:  curezone.com/art/read.asp?ID=28&db=5&C0=0
  7. Probiotic Enema:  curezone.com/art/read.asp?ID=37&db=5&C0=0
  8. Garlic-Epson Salt Enema: [ curezone.com/art/read.asp?ID=32&db=5&C0=0 Catherine Cavanaugh RN instructions: http://www.geocities.com/valerie_cct/enemas.html [geocities.com no longer valid]; OR assatashakur .org/forum/afrikan-wholistic-health/4951-how-give-yourself-somone-else-enema.html [I’ve disabled this link because it may contain malware or deceptive content]
  9. http://www.moondragon.org/health/therapy/lbifidusenema.html
  10. http://www.the-natural-path.com/enema.html
  11. (11a) http://www.health-information-fitness.com/enemarecipes.html; (11b) http://www.health-information-fitness.com/apcve.htm
  12. http://www.oocities.org/valerie_cct/
  13. best-home-remedies.com/alternative_medicines/enemas.htm
  14. http://www.enemakit.com/faq.html
  15. http://valerie_cct.tripod.com/parentsg.html
  16. link lost
  17. Amazon image: amazon.com/Mabis-Healthcare-Combination-Douche-Enemasystem/dp/B000BH8BL2
  18. Coffee Enema Dr. Max Gerson protocol: aloeride.com/people/coffee-enema/

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