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How to Administer an Enema With a Bulb Syringe

Updated July 18, 2017

There are many types of enemas and reasons to administer one. You will generally want to pick a time when you will not be disturbed for at least a half hour or more. The bulb syringe enema is generally easy to administer. Be sure it is prefilled and the liquid is not cold, unless otherwise specified by your doctor. With a little preplanning, this normally uncomfortable procedure can be accomplished quickly and painlessly.

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  1. Place some towels on the floor of the bathroom as close to the toilet as possible. Have the person who is receiving the enema lie down on the towels on his side with no clothing covering the rectal area.

  2. Fill the syringe with warm or room temperature enema liquid, if it is not prefilled. Remove any covering over the tip and lubricate with petroleum jelly or a water soluble lubricant. Gently insert tip into rectum, no more than two inches, and squeeze bulb to administer liquid.

  3. Remain on your side or lay face side up and place legs on tub or toilet to raise the butt off the floor for about 5 to 20 minutes. Use the toilet once the urge to eliminate occurs.

  4. Tip

    Make sure the person receiving the enema is relaxed and calm. It is much harder to insert the enema and its contents if the muscles are too tight. There might be some liquid leaking out, therefore the towels will make cleanup much easier.


    Do not force tip of enema into the rectum more than 2 inches in adults. Be sure to use a lubricant to prevent chaffing or pain. Before using an enema, you should first speak to your physician. Using enemas too often can cause a dependency.

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Things You'll Need

  • Towels
  • Bulb enema
  • Enema fluid
  • Lubricant

About the Author

Catherine Smith

Catherine Smith has been writing professionally since 2000. She runs a client-based wellness office in Bastrop, Texas. She specializes in pain and stress management using herbs and alternative medicine She received her doctorate in natural health with a concentration in herbal studies from Clayton College of Natural Health.

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