Anal douching (also called rectal douching) is the practice of cleaning the rectum with water. The main reason for this is hygiene: the water serves to clear away any, erm, bits and pieces that are hanging around up there.
Anal douching is often associated with gay men, as the demographic most likely to engage in anal sex, but the truth is that many men douche for masturbation purposes. Prostate play is a lot of fun, but it can get messy; if you are a fan of anal play then douching reduces the likelihood of poop on your playthings!
There are several products and tools available for rectal douching. The most common tool is the bulb syringe, which looks like a pliable plastic bulb attached to a short tube. You might also see shower and water bag douches for sale in sex shops.
Be aware that douching can be uncomfortable, especially for first timers; the ‘full’ sensation is very odd! Start with a small amount of water (there is no need to use whole bulbful) and a very low pressure (be especially careful with shower attachments).
A douche bulb is a squeezable bulb with a short tube. This is the best way to anal douche for beginners; it is cheap, easy to use and unlikely to cause damage.
To use a bulb douche:
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It's simple as that! Just remember that you don't need to empty the whole bulb on one go.
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A shower douche (sometimes called an enema douche) is a useful bit of kit which attaches neatly to your shower. Some users prefer the feeling of a deeper clean these provide. A shower douche is recommended only for those who plan deeper anal play, and must always be used with caution as too high water pressure can be harmful.
Anal douche and enema are often used interchangeably. If we're precise, though, we'll find out that rectal douching is not the same thing as an enema. Douching cleans the rectum while an enema is designed to clean further into the intestine. For most sex and solo play, rectal douching is more than enough.
This is a good middle ground between a bulb douche and a shower attachment. It consists of a bag and a tube. To use: fill the bag with water and hang it up – the force of the water is created by gravity so it is important to hang the bag above the tube – then lubricate the end of the tube and insert it into the rectum. The water will flow through gently, cleaning as it goes.
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There is a lot of contradictory and confusing information available about anal douching and its associated risks. The fact is that many people douche regularly over many years with no noticeable side effects, but there are still a few things to be aware of.
The wall of the bowel and intestine are delicate and high pressure or large quantities of water can cause damage. A shower douche attachment (or shower hose) must be used with care as the water pressure and heat is variable and it would be easy to cause damage without meaning to. If you plan to douche then it is advisable to stick to small amounts of water; a bulb syringe is typically adequate.
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It is also possible to irritate your anus by douching too often. There is a protective mucous lining in your anus, which serves to protect your skin. Washing it away regularly can leave you open to irritation and even infections. Avoid douching very often and never ever use soap or anything other than clean, lukewarm water.
There is some evidence that suggests that rectal douching can increase the risk of transferring HIV or Hepatitis B during anal sex (though unsafe sex with an infected or unknown partner is never recommended!) but douching for prostate play seems to be a harmless practice, if done correctly.
Always remember that douching is optional, even for those who regularly indulge in anal adventures. The rectum is usually empty until you need to ‘go’, and a small amount of mess is not the end of the world.
Sex is a messy business, and shit happens. Douche only if you are comfortable with it.
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