Ok bears, we have last month’s cover man Dr. George Forgan-Smith back to give us the ins and outs of anal sex (pun definitely intended!). Today we talk about the proper way to douche.
He gave me so much amazing information that I have decided to break our interview with him up into a series of articles so that each facet of the anal sex experience gets its do. By far, douching seems to be the thing we are most misinformed about despite many of us having lots of experience in the area as sexually active, bottoming bears of a certain age.
I hope you find this conversation as illuminating as I did.
John Hernandez: Ok Doc, first things first, if you’ve made the decision to have anal sex, most bottoms will want to douche. What is the proper way to douche for anal sex? And can you injure yourself from improper douching?
Dr. George: Yes and no. Look, I think the biggest issue with douching is that nobody teaches people how to douche. You don’t need a douching hose unless you’re getting fisted. The little bulbs are perfect, transportable and the right volume.
So, let’s talk about the ass. If you’re standing the ‘ass’, or rectum, is a vertical tube. It is approximately 12 to 14 centimeters (4.5 to 5.5 inches) long going up, but not quite straight up, before turning into the colon. If you think about it, that’s the column that you want to clean out when douching. As a general rule, it should be empty already, so you don’t even have to douche as long as you understand that there is a small risk of poo. It’s not likely that bombs are going to come out of there, but you’re playing in the pool, there’s a chance you’ll get splashed!
The only time the rectum fills up is within 20 minutes of eating. When you eat, the stomach gets stretched and it sends the signal to the rest of the gut to shuffle along to make room for the food that’s in the stomach. That’s called the gastroesophageal reflex. So, the food will shuffle down into the rectum. It will cause stretching at the internal sphincter, and you will get the signal to do a poo. At that time, if you have a good fiber diet, if you’re eating your two pieces of fruit, 5 servings of vegetables, or drinking your Metamucil or whatever, all that poo will be stuck together nicely with fiber, and it will just all come out and the rectum will be empty. The first key to successful douching is having a high fiber diet.
Now, when looking at that 12-to-14-centimeter tube, we have to consider its capacity. The volume of that tube ranges, but on average it would be about 200 mL of water. That’s important because above the 200 mL threshold, it turns to the left into the sigmoid colon and once water seeps into there it just mixes with poo and you will have brown water coming out. If you are douching and you get brown water, it’s because you’re over-douching and you’ve used too much water. If that’s happened, you just have to wait a little bit for everything to settle down.
For douching, I recommend people use a bulb because the bulbs generally hold about 200 mL of water. You want to do it standing up as you need to be vertical. The bulbs that I recommend are super, super soft. They have a flexible tip on it, nothing sharp that could scratch your anus and give you a fissure. The bulb doesn’t need to go all the way into the arse, just the tip needs to go near the hole. As long as there’s a little bit inside the hole, you gently squeeze the water into the butt and then pull the bulb out with the bulb still squeezed; because if you open the bulb, it’ll suck the water back into itself.
Then you do your happy dance. Jiggle, jiggle, jiggle, jiggle – which is to swish the water around and then you go to the toilet and squeeze it out. Some people do it in the shower and if they’re happy to do the waffle stomp then good luck to them! Usually two or three of those and you should be clean and ready for anal sex.
You want to go ‘Goldilocks’ with the water – not too hot, not too cold. Beyond the sphincter we don’t have sensory nerves in there to warn us that the water is too hot, so that can lead to severe damage. Test the water on the inside of your wrist and if it feels tepid, that’s the right temperature. If it’s too cold you’ll get cramps, and if it’s too hot you’ll get burnt!
So, in sum, Goldilocks water, one squeeze of a bulb, a bit of a dance and then shoot it out. Repeat once or twice and you should be fine.
It’s also important to note that when you’re douching, you will be washing away the mucosal lining of the rectum. That mucosal lining takes about 20 minutes to replenish. Two tasks after you’ve douched is to absorb any residual water and to allow the mucosal lining to replenish. So, wait about 20 minutes before having sex. Any residual water that’s in the ass will get reabsorbed and the mucosal lining will have come back which will further aid in water reabsorption, reducing the potential for any mess created by the water.
If you are doing the level of douching just described, you should be all set for the average penis all the way up to John Holmes territory. The people who spend hours and hours douching, that’s for people who are fisting and who really want to do depth stuff. For most people, a simple douche is fine. It should take no longer than 15 to 20 minutes. If you’re spending hours doing it, I suspect that one, you need a higher fiber diet, and two, you’re probably using too much water.
John Hernandez: Just incredible doc. No one has ever broken down douching like that before. That’s a lot of great information…
And that’s only the beginning folks. Next time Dr. George fills me in on the proper way to dilate your hole, which lubes to use and how new or inexperienced bottoms can take it to the hilt. WOOF!
Dr. George Forgan- Smith is an expert in gay men’s health dedicated to the bear, leather and kink communities which he serves faithfully in Melbourne, Australia. In addition to working at the Collins Street Medical Centre and creating tons of educational content for his social media accounts (links below), he is the creator of The Healthy Bear website which he uses to share vital health information pertaining to and about our community.
Stay in touch with Dr George and up to date on the latest in gay men’s health by signing up to his mailing list HERE.
***Disclaimer: You must not rely on the information on this website as an alternative to medical advice from your doctor or other professional healthcare provider. If you have any specific questions about any medical matter you should consult your doctor or other professional healthcare provider. If you think you may be suffering from any medical condition you should seek immediate medical attention. You should never delay seeking medical advice, disregard medical advice, or discontinue medical treatment because of information on this website.