What Is An Enema?
Enemas are widely performed both on healthy and on ill adults and children. They can be cleansing or medicinal. They are used to relieve constipation and to treat number of conditions among which acute and chronic inflammation of the small and large intestine. Enemas cleanse the bowels from old fecal matter build up. They are also used to administer medicine and even food and water to patients suffering from a serious illness. Depending on their purpose, enemas are performed using plain water or water with added substances. What is an Enema.
Standard (Cleansing) Enema
You will need one litre of warm water (37°С). The irrigator and the hands of the person performing the procedure must be washed thoroughly beforehand. (Translator`s Note: some parts of the following description were out-of-date and have been modernized for the sake of clarity) Here is how you perform the enema:
1) Hang the irrigator about 1-1.5 metres above the bed.
2) Release any air that might be trapped in the hose.
3) The patient should lie on their left side and raise their backside slightly.
4) The person performing the enema or the patient themself takes the rectal tip (which has been coated in Vaseline, butter or soap), inserts it carefully into the colon about 8-10 centimetres deep and releases the clamp so that the water can start flowing. If the water will not flow, pull the rectal tip back a little.
5) If the patient starts feeling discomfort while the rectal tip is still inside and cannot hold the water in, place a towel under them and press together the sides of their back passage (anus) until the water stops flowing.
6) After all of the water in the irrigator (or as much of it as the patient can take in without experiencing discomfort) has gone in, close the clamp, pull out the rectal tip and let the patient lie down on their right side for 3-5 minutes so that the water can reach deeper inside the intestines.
The water you use can be warmer or cooler. When administering enemas to children it is recommended to use bulb syringes which are sold in pharmacies.
Press the hose with your fingers from time to time while the water is flowing to reduce the pressure of the water.
Once the water is inside, the patient should try to hold it in for several minutes. The bowels are then released naturally and the stomach should be pressed gently with both hands in order to ease the passage of the stool through the intestines.
For nursing babies the cleansing enema can be substituted with special suppositories which are sold in pharmacies or with a piece of soap shaped into a suppository and coated in Vaseline or oil.
For a cleansing enema you will need 100-200 ml of water for infants aged 1-3, 200-350 ml of water for children aged 3-6, 350-600 ml of water for children aged 6-10 and600-800 ml of water for children aged 10-14.