How long does it take an enema to work?

What is an enema?

An enema is a liquid laxative that is administered rectally. Enemas cannot be taken by mouth or in any other way. Enemas are never to be taken orally. The medical purpose for the enema is that it relieves constipation. You can also use an enema prior to medical procedures or examinations. Your doctor will prescribe you an enema if it is needed for the medical exam. Enemas are administrated rectally by introducing the laxative liquid into the rectum instead of the digestive system which means it won’t upset your digestive system. When you begin using enemas it is a good idea to discuss it with your doctor. Your doctor can tell you how many days in a row they would like you to use an enema and what guidelines to follow. Fleet enemas are meant to be used once and then discarded. They are not to be reused. Using more than one enema in a 24-hour period can be harmful.

Fleet Enema for Constipation

How long does it take an enema to work?

There are different brands of enemas, but a Fleet enema generally starts to work within five minutes. However, every person is different so do not be surprised if the time is shorter or longer. If you have taken a saline laxative and it has not worked in 30 minutes, then you should call your doctor because you may become dehydrated.

What to do if an enema doesn't work?

No bowel movement after an enema? Then you should contact your doctor if it has been 30 minutes and you have not been able to move your bowels. There could be a problem and your doctor will want to make sure you are not in danger of becoming dehydrated. They will also want to check and make sure that you do not have some kind of bowel impaction that is preventing the enema from working. Do not take another enema, call your doctor.

How long do you poop after a fleet enema?

This is a question we get a lot and one that people are rather embarrassed to ask, they shouldn’t be! It is normal to want to know what to expect when you are using something like an enema for the first time. You will probably not have to call off work or dedicate an entire day to using an enema. It does vary person to person though. The first time you use a Fleet enema I would recommend giving yourself a longer period from start to finish. General guides say that it will start to work between 5 and 10 minutes and bowel evacuation will last between 30 and 60 minutes. However, remember, your body is not a clock. Some people use an enema and it is fast acting and it is one trip to the toilet and they are done. This isn’t everyone though. Be patient and communicate how it works for you with your doctor. They will be able to monitor it with you to make sure you are using enemas in a healthy way that works for you specifically. You should stay close to a toilet while using an enema until you are comfortable with how it works for you.

How long should you hold the liquid laxative in before you use the bathroom?

In general, the Fleet enema should be held in for at least two minutes. If two minutes have not passed you will want to resist the urge to go until it has because this will give the medicine time to work and will make the bowel evacuation work more effectively. You need to give the active ingredients the time they need to work.

What is the difference between a saline enema and a bisacodyl enema?

How does an enema work? Saline enemas increase water in the intestine which promotes a bowel movement. The saline draws water into the colon which helps to decrease muscle spasms or pain while promoting a bowel movement. A bisacodyl enema is a stimulant enema and promotes a bowel movement by directly acting on the intestine and causes a rhythmic action which pushes the feces through the bowels. Both styles relieve constipation. Talk to your doctor about which one they would prefer you to use. There are also suppositories that can help with constipation. A popular brand is Magic Bullets and they can be purchased by the pack of ten or the box of one hundred. If you would like more information about Magic Bullets see our blog titled, Magic Bullet Suppository and Your Bowel Program.

Fleet Enemas, Everyone Poops Enema for constipation or an enema for a doctor's exam can be done safely and effectively. An enema should relieve you of your constipation and help you to feel more comfortable. If you are frequently constipated, you will again want to talk to your doctor about it and see what they can do for you. Constipation can be a symptom of other problems and your doctor can help you figure out why you are having problems. If you are using an enema for a medical examination and need to know when to use the enema or how long the enema lasts you can ask your doctor if they would like you to perform the enema in the morning the day of the exam or the night before. Give yourself space and time so you can be comfortable. Using an enema doesn't have to be weird or scary, it is a normal medical procedure that can help you feel better if you are suffering with constipation. Don't be embarrassed to ask questions about your body or your health. You are your best advocate! 

Comments (2) -

  • George

    9/11/2018 11:50:41 AM |

    Puppy! So cute!!

  • Steven Peterson

    2/5/2019 12:35:24 PM |

    Don't be afraid of an enema. I've had to take them fairly often for. A few years now. If you relax, take your time and have a helper, an enema can actually be quite relaxing. (or stimulating)

  • Mark

    7/11/2019 7:41:55 PM |

    I use them quite regularly. I no longer have a colon. Just the small intestine hooked up to my anus. It helps a lot.

  • Cassandra

    7/30/2019 5:52:28 AM |

    The fleets Saline  enema was easy and comfortable to use. How do you know if all the stool is gone?

  • Jeff

    10/11/2019 11:44:08 AM |

    I don't know how cramping can be quite relaxing, but I do agree it's nothing to be afraid of. If you have to do it, just do it! You need to be close to a bathroom for a few hours depending on how backed up you are.

  • Stacy

    12/21/2019 12:38:29 PM |

    Ive had Chronic constipation due to medication for the past year and have been taking dulcolax medicated suppositories for it a few times a week but now it seems to not be working as well leaving me with the urge to still go and was wondering how a saline enema with sodium phosphates in it works for you and does it have any reactions with other meds? Thank you very much

  • Gary Gustin

    1/25/2020 7:41:35 AM |

    I'm in the ER now, I agreed to try a Fleet enema after I read this.. The nurses are getting ready to give me a third try with a much larger enema from a very full pair of buckets with long hoses connected to a long tip @ the bottom & an Rx to retry on the hour until they can get 75% or more in for 15 min.

    I would not have done this if I knew it wouldn't be like the Fleets here. It's incredibly uncomfortable & I'm told i may have to be admitted to finish if I ask to stop.

  • Jessica

    4/10/2020 8:29:42 PM |

    I have been this way since i was a baby but now it's been 2 maybe 3 weeks HELP ME I'VE TRIED EVERYTHING IM SO SCARED I DO NOT WANT TO DIE. I read that you can.from not going.

  • Des

    4/22/2020 9:53:35 PM |

    I was wondering if when you use an enema does it normally get all of the poop out of your intestines. Because I gave myself an enema and I went to the bathroom and a lot came out but I still feel bloated like in between the beginning of my rib cage down to the beginning of my belly button.

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