I’m often asked about quick fixes for constipation like the fleet enema for example.
The fleet enema approach is often a quick and easy, cost-effective approach to constipation relief.
While it promises fast relief, the truth is, that it’s a double-edged sword.
Let’s delve into the procedure, shed light on its potential dangers, and unveil the power of gentle, natural alternatives so you can decide for yourself.
Fleet Enema Procedure
Let’s first discuss the fleet enema procedure. Below are fleet enema instructions with pictures.
- Find a comfortable position for the process. It is best to lay towels down on the bathroom floor with something to rest your head on so you are near the toilet.
You can opt to lie on your left side with your right knee drawn up toward your chest or choose to kneel with the left side of your face resting on a pillow.
2. Gently and gradually insert the lubed tip into your rectum (coconut oil works great), ensuring you remove the plastic cover before insertion.
3. Utilize a gentle side-to-side motion while inserting the tip, and consider a slight downward push mimicking a natural bowel movement. This helps in muscle relaxation, facilitating easier tip insertion.
Always avoid forcing the tip into your rectum, as excessive force could potentially harm this sensitive area.
4. Squeeze the bottle to release the liquid into your rectum. You don’t need to dispense the entire liquid; stop when you experience a sense of fullness in the region.
5. Maintain the chosen position until you sense the urge to have a bowel movement, typically occurring within 1 to 5 minutes.
If the urge doesn’t manifest within this timeframe, attempt to have a bowel movement without using another enema.
If you don’t experience a bowel movement within 5 minutes, reach out to your healthcare provider for guidance rather than administering another enema without professional advice.
Side Effects | Risks
Caution #1: The F.D.A. suggests using caution with the fleet enema because of the sodium phosphate ingredient in most popular fleet enema brands.
It is mentioned here on the FDA website that exceeding the recommended dose in a 24 hour span although rare could cause severe kidney damage, heart damage or death as a result.
Please be advised that utilizing a fleet enema should not be a crutch and seeking long term natural health strategies to relive constipation is paramount.
It is important to not use a fleet enema more than once in a 24 hour period.
You also will want to discuss with a qualified health practitioner the potential causes of constipation if it is a regular issue for you.
Caution #2 is dependency. Getting hooked on a fleet enema could cause:
- Electrolyte & Gut Flora Imbalance
- Dependency could weaken natural contractions
Similar to laxatives this can cause an unhealthy dependency.
What is best is to find the root cause of the issue.
Caution #3 are bowel issues such as:
- Intestinal inflammation
- Intestinal damage
This is information to inform you when considering a fleet enema and are very rare risks but should be mentioned.
If you do not properly clean it and reuse it it can result in an infection.
You should be sure to thoroughly clean the fleet enema if you intend to reuse it.
If it is a disposable “one use,” enema this should not be an issue.
If you do an enema once in a while gut flora imbalances may not be an issue however it is good to follow up with a good probiotic to re-inoculate the gut with friendly microbes.
People in advanced age have more of a risk of infection with a perforation in the lining as the intestinal lining may get weak over time.
You see this more in colonics then something like a fleet enema but it should be mentioned.
Using a gentle approach plus a lubricant will should avoid issues of damage to the colon.
Later we will address some alternatives that may be less risky to evacuate your bowels.
Is a Fleet Enema Effective?
A fleet enema can give you relief and help move your bowels when you need a quick fix.
One thing to be aware of when using fleet enemas for overcoming constipation is that it only gets to the lower part of the colon.
If you want to clean the entire length of the colon you will need to implore different methods such as a colon cleanse.
A fleet enema is a temporary solution. In the next section, we will consider what might be the root cause.
Chronic constipation is a deeper issue and you and your trusted health professional should look into it further.
Whether it is caused by:
- Medical Issue
- Lifestyle Choices
- Fecal Impaction
- Electrolyte Imbalance
- Lack of fiber
- Gut Flora Imbalance
…to name a few possibilities to look further into.
Using a fleet enema is not a substitute for regular, healthy bowel movements.
It is best to find out what could be the root issue.
Fleet Enema Alternatives
1. Fiber Intake:
- Why it works: Fiber acts like a broom in your digestive system, bulking up stool and making it easier to pass.
It also attracts water, keeping stool soft and preventing constipation.
- Recommended forms of fiber: Aim for 25-35 grams of fiber daily from whole foods, low glycemic fruits such as berries and cucumbers, vegetables, sprouted legumes, and nuts.
Psyllium husk and chia seeds are excellent sources as well.
You might enjoy trying some of our whole food organic recipes here.
- Lifestyle tips: Gradually increase fiber intake to avoid bloating, drink plenty of water, and combine with other strategies like probiotic intake.
2. Digestive Enzymes:
- Why They Work: Enzymes break down food into smaller molecules for easier absorption.
Supplemental enzymes can aid digestion, especially for those with enzyme deficiencies.
As the years go by we lose our ability to manufacture our enzymes.
This is why a diet with at least 50% of living foods helps.
When this is not possible digestive enzymes can help you digest and feel your best.
This is one of the most potent high-quality digestive enzyme blends on the market.
- Types of enzymes: Protease for protein, lipase for fat, and amylase for carbohydrates. Choose a broad-spectrum enzyme blend for best results.
- Dosage and timing: Take enzymes with meals or just before, starting with a low dose and gradually increasing as needed. You may also want to consult a healthcare professional for specific recommendations.
To learn more about enzyme therapy you may check out our article here.
3. Colon Cleanse:
- Explain the approach: Instead of forcefully flushing the colon, gentle cleanses focus on stimulating detoxification and natural elimination. This can involve herbs, fiber-rich foods, or my favorite an oxygen based cleanser like Oxy Powder.
- Popular cleanse methods: Bentonite clay, psyllium husk powder with warm water, Epsom salt baths, and castor oil packs over the stomach.
- Caution and disclaimer: Individual needs vary from person to person. Cleanse methods are not for everyone and pregnant women, those with chronic illnesses, and people on medication should consult a healthcare professional first.
- The Link of Hydration: Dehydration contributes to constipation by hardening stool and slowing intestinal movement. Adequate pure hydration keeps things flowing smoothly.
- Recommended water intake: Hydrate with filtered or pure water sources, adjusting the amount based on activity level and climate.
Herbal teas and natural electrolytes can also contribute.
- Tips for increasing water intake: Carry a reusable water bottle, set reminders, add slices of fruit or cucumber to your water for flavor, and choose water over sugary drinks.
5. Probiotic-Rich Foods & Aloe:
- The role of gut bacteria: Gut bacteria play a crucial role in digestion and overall health. Probiotics help maintain a healthy balance of good bacteria, promoting smooth bowel movements and preventing constipation.
- Sources of probiotics: Yogurt with live cultures, kefir, kimchi, sauerkraut, kombucha, tempeh, and miso.
- Aloe Juice: is very soothing and you can make drinks with the inner fillet or get yourself dried capsules or bottles and take shots of aloe. This is my favorite brand and has no preservatives stored in glass.
- Lifestyle factors: Reduce stress, get enough sleep, and avoid excessive antibiotics, which can disrupt gut flora.
Fleet Enema Questions
Other Types Of Enemas
Other types of enemas that you may want to consider are:
- Probiotic Implants/Enemas
- Coffee Enemas
- WheatGrass Enemas
A probiotic enema is different than a fleet enema in that it innoculates the lower colon with beneficial bacteria.
Typically it is done with a small bulb enema and held for 15 minutes up to 1 hour.
Coffee enemas help to cleanse the liver and I talk about them extensively in my article here.
For this, you can use an enema bucket.
A wheatgrass enema or implant is typically with a bulb enema.
This provides nutrients to the colon and can be helpful if you don’t easily absorb nutrients otherwise. It is also a detoxifier.
Fleet Enema TakeAways
While fleet enemas may offer temporary relief, their potential risks demand careful consideration.
Opting for natural alternatives or adjuncts:
- Fiber-rich foods,
- Digestive enzymes
- Probiotic-rich sources
- Gentle abdominal stimulation methods like castor oil packs
- Leg elevation on a stool will create a squat-like position. This can not only address constipation but also promote long-term digestive health by nurturing your gut biome and supporting natural elimination.
- Aloe Juice is soothing to the digestive tract and can help with ease of elimination.
Natural Colon Cleanse
Remember, your body possesses incredible self-healing potential; empower it with natural allies for gentle yet effective relief.
You can also get great results with a gentle colon cleanse with a supplement like oxy powder.
It is incredible on how it revives the entire digestive tract and cleans the entire length of the colon not just the lower part.
This post was all about the fleet enema and the things you will want to be aware of plus common questions.
Let me know what has been your experience with a fleet enema.
Do you prefer natural methods and colon cleansing instead? Or more of a hybrid approach?