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I'm a little embarrased to ask this question but I feel this is the place to ask safely and possibly get some help. My partners mother who lives with us now, occasionally has problems going to the bathroom and moans and groans on the toilet for hours which in itself is very nerve-wracking as it is, I have read up about it and suggested a laxative occasionally when this happens. She eats very well and has a very healthy diet but recently has not wanted to walk which I think has a lot to do with it. Anyway, what i am troubled about it the fact that the other day my partner told me he had helped her, and when I asked what he meant he said he had stuck his finger up her rectum!!! II'm afraid I was repulsed by that as I don't think it is very normal thing for someone to do or healthy in many ways or to be, honest to allow someone except maybe a doctor to intervene like that. It wasn't a one-time thing and for the past few days she cries out when she tries to go and so he has done it a few times.I have told him that I don't think it is correct and could possibly cause her the pain she now has whenever she goes to the bathroom.Please help me with this as it has me very worried with such unnatural behaviour. Surely perhaps a laxative or a suppository would be more appropriate. As I say, I am repulsed by it and the fact that he does that.So basically, even though it repulses me is this right and normal or what would your opinions be.My partner says it is normal, but I certainly wouldn't want or allow my son to have to do that to me. Now everytime she goes to the bathroom she calls out to him. Please correct me if I am wrong in thinking like this. Really need some guidance on this urgently. Thanks

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To lzmir55: There was nothing in your post that appeared to suggest hysteria or excessive emotion. If I had a partner who was sticking his finger up his mother's rectum--not just once to help her remove an impaction in an emergency situation, but enough times that it's to the point she's now calling out for him every time she goes to the bathroom--I'd be reacting just as you did.

As many have posted, his mother needs to be seen by her doctor and the constipation issue needs to be addressed and resolved. There are simple ways to do this. Even my 91-year-old dad, with a TBI years ago that has affected even his ability to push out a BM, has regular bowel movements now without constipation.

pmmacc: In my opinion, your post was a bit rude to lzmir55. Perhaps it's you who is suffering from "hysteria".
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I had no option vstefans mums anal sphincter was for want of a better phrase jammed open and would not close and she was in agony yet the professionals wouldn't come out (its the weekend you know ....and?) and she couldn't sit down at all without increasing the pain so while I know it is wrong for me to do it I actually HAD to - they didn't consider it serious enough for an emergency visit to the hospital and I couldn't sit her down in my car to get her there - what else could I have done - that sounds aggressive - its not meant to be - its meant to be an explanation of why I did what I did. Mum has diverticulosis so it can come on incredibly quickly
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Sometimes just a warm shower relaxes all of the muscles of the body, and I find relief from that.
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Manual disimpaction and digital stimulation are two different things and if you are having to do either in the absence of a true neurogenic bowel (spina bifida, spinal cord injury) situation, something is wrong. Consider using Enemeez (a liquid suppository for adults) and Miralax, if just increasing fiber and fluids does not work.

Bidets are fine, for hygiene. There are medical procedures such as a continent enema catheter or even continent cecostomy, but you do not spray anything forcefully into the body.
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Bidetsprayerman, Forcefully shooting water up the rectum or any other orifice can cause SERIOUS Injury, leading to embolism or clot to the lungs, heart or brain! So Dangerous! Suggesting such advice could lead you to a lawsuit, and you could lose your business and everything you've worked for your entire life! Read up on it, if this is advice you are recommending to your customers! Search Fat embolism, embolism, blood clot!
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OMG Susan! I have been biting my tounge for hours! Must. Make. Joke! One involves a proctologist and the other starts with "look! Up in the air! It's bird. It's a plane. It's ..."
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In actual fact with regard to the very frail and the very elderly our doctor doesn't recommend anything at all except daily laxatives. He certainly does not approve of digital manipulation (although I have manually disimpacted Mum on two occasions because she was in so much pain). He also doesn't approve of any assisted enema type spray that can ''shoot a quick blast of water up inside like a mini-power enema to get things loose and moving.''

Anything of that nature should be left to doctors to advise on not some sales pitch from someone who has self interest at the heart of the comments
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If anyone takes pain medication on a regular basis, you know it is very easy to have this problem in spite of eating more fiber and drinking more liquids. My dad used to take two stool softeners every night, and that worked for him. Since my last colonoscopy indicated some large pockets in my colon, the doctor told me to take two Citicrucel tablets at night to keep them cleaned out. I now take pain medication, and I have had the severe and painful problem described by your mil, lzmir. My doctor said to start with two stool softeners in addition to the Citicrucel, and add two stool softeners, each night until I got relief. I asked if they could do any harm. He said they were basically oil, but warned that too many would have have the opposite effect. I have taken up to six for a few nights with no negative effects....just welcomed relief!! I don't think manual stimulation,is gross or unnatural, just a bodily need for some people. I wouldn't want anyone except the doctor doing what your husband is doing for his mother, but he is a loving son. There aren't too many men who would do that. You know what they say about men who are good to their mothers.... Appreciate that guy, but get an alternate way to help your mil. Stool softeners are sold at any pharmacy OTC. Good luck.
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Is that a professional opinion, bidetsprayerman? Cause this site has a no solicitation policy that I'm pretty sure you're violating.
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Just a caution about digital stimulation: My mom did her own digital stimulation for her constipation and it led to a colon infection, which subsequently spread & caused her death. Mom refused to use the surgeon's gloves (my sister had given her a box of them), her fingernails cut, wound got infected. Be very careful.
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It's one thing to keep promoting bidet sprayers, which are indeed great for some people, but to promote the idea that you should spray water up the rectum to stimulate a bowel movement is irresponsible quackery (in my humble opinion).
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Am I the only one getting annoyed with bidetsprayermans sales pitches?
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How did I miss this the first time around? Digital stimulation is definitely the LAST thing you turn to in your arsenal, only after you have tried modified higher fiber diets, increased fluids, various laxatives, stool softeners, suppositories and enemas. It can irritate hemorrhoids, is uncomfortable for the patient and no fun for the caregiver. BTW, I struggle to get my mom to go once a week, she is on stool softeners daily and stimulant laxatives (MoM) as needed, I know constipation!
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Try, if you can, to keep a journal of liquids and BMs. This will give the doctor some notion of what you are already trying. My mother is on a daily dose of senna to keep things moving, as she may or may not eat much in a day, or enough fiber-rich foods.
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Thank you for your answers, believe me I have reason to be emotional pmmacc I am not being hysterical at all, thought I could ask a question without being judged here...but on the contrary,to get some support. Thank you GardenArtist, your suggestions were helpful.
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Can his Mom try to use Enema(Fleet) that you can get from any of drug store or water enama, when I was taking care of my client who had MS so he couldn't use his muscle .... woked each time with water bottle enema, my client was Doctor himself...
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I know that rectal stimulation, was something that I learned, when I had a newborn, trying to help him to learn to push. Noe again, he was a brand new baby, and The Dr told me to put petroleum jelly onto a Q-tip, and very gentle insert it into his little bum, so that he would learn to push back, thereby stimulating that learned behavior. I know it seems an odd task, and definitely a strange thing to have to do for ones on mothe, but if that is what it takes to help her to have that stimulation to initiate a BM, then I don't think it's a bad thing, just very awkward, especially it being her son doing it. But big applauds from me to a Son, who is so obviously trying his best to help the old gal out! Weird yes, repulsive No. He probably learned this technique as a new/young father, just as I did as a new and young mother, and it works!
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Take senna daily..
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If she went to the ER and was "impacted", they do just what he did, only the hospital charges a heck of a lot of money. Go get some stool softeners.
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I think you are getting way too emotional about this. It is possible to need to use digits to remove an impaction, however this should not be common or daily. As mentioned, there are other things that can be done. What your partner is resorting to can be very painful for his mother and even cause damage in the rectial area. However, you being embarassed and/or worse about a simple body function does not help your partner, or his mother. Hysteria dosen't work well.
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I have no idea whether this is an accepted treatment but there are other options to consider first.

Is she drinking enough fluids? That's often a problem with older folks - they don't drink enough water or fluids. Warm fluids help - hot cider is not only fragrant and comforting but it can be stimulative. So can other juices.

Make sure she eats a mix of fruits and veggies with her meals, especially those with meats. Walnuts are healthy and can also be stimulative. Cantaloupe, watermelon, pears and grapes are generally fairly fast acting, but could be combined with more solid foods.

There are also stool softeners that could help, especially if her fluid consumption is low.

I'd try natural remedies first, and try to get her to see her primary care doctor, internist, or possibly a gastroenterologist specialist.
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It is best for your partner's Mom to make an appointment with her primary doctor. There are so many different things that could be causing this issue, and many different things to help relieve the situation.
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