What Is an Enema Bag?

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  • Written By: Erin J. Hill
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 15 October 2019
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An enema bag is a reusable bag with attachable nozzles which are used in the treatment of severe constipation or before a medical procedure. The bag is filled with an enema solution and the nozzle is attached to be inserted into the rectum. By introducing the solution into the rectal cavity, fecal matter is released from the walls of the colon and partially dissolved for easier passing.

The use of an enema bag is common for those who suffer from severe and recurrent bouts of constipation, as well as in medical facilities in order to clean the colon of its contents before surgery or another procedure. The solution is generally effective within five minutes and may continue for up to one hour.

Although there are disposable enemas available on the market, the use of a reusable bag has many benefits for those who use enemas frequently. Most come with more than one nozzle, one for the enema and one for douching. The nozzles are often longer than disposable ones, and the enema bag holds more solution than those found in pharmacies so the enema can reach farther and remove more waste.


The overall cost of using an enema bag is also less than disposable options if enemas are performed relatively frequently. Users also have the option of buying a commercial enema solution or preparing one themselves to get the one which works best. There are various recipes available on the Internet or in books with information on preparing an effective enema.

When using an enema bag it is important to clean it thoroughly after each use. Cleaning can be done with warm soap and water along with one or two drops of bleach in order to kill any bacteria. The bag should be allowed to air dry before using again or storing in order to prevent mildew or mold growth. Nozzles should also be cleaned thoroughly, and the same nozzle should not be used for both rectal and vaginal use.

Using a disposable bag may be a better choice if constipation is brief and not an ongoing problem. They usually contain a saline enema solution and a plastic “bag” which can be thrown away after use. It is not advised to reuse disposable enema bags because the solution is no longer sterile after opening and the bag and the nozzle can’t be effectively cleaned.


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Post 3

@anamur-- That usually happens when the nozzle is too small. The nozzle needs to have a good fit in order for the enema bag to work properly. There are reusable enema bags that come with several different nozzles. Did yours come with just one?

You could probably buy a nozzle separately and attach it to your enema bag. Ask the manufacturer if they sell nozzles separately.

Most people pay attention to the quality and size of the enema bag but forget to look at different options for nozzles. I have a great 6 quart enema bag that came with four different nozzles in different lengths and sizes. It can take a few tries to see which type of nozzle works best, so it's nice to have options.

Post 2

I bought my first reusable enema bag last week. It definitely holds more enema than the previous enema bags I used from the pharmacy. And I'm glad that I can just clean this one and reuse it.

The only problem is the nozzle. The nozzle leaks enema from the side while I'm using it. I'm not sure what the problem is but almost half of the enema leaked out of the bag and went to waste.

Post 1

Well written, factually correct and refreshingly to the point. A great article!

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