💩Finding Joy in Your Colonoscopy Journey 💩
Download of supplies is at bottom of post!
- When scheduling – look at my timing idea (on page 3) to help plan a good time.
- Ask your Doctor about the PILL option for prep day.
- Some people find it less gross than drinking the amount they need to with the other prep option.
- It may cost more – but worth it!
- If you need to do the drinking kind, ask for the one that requires less liquid.
- It may cost more, but it will be worth every penny!
- Don’t plan anything big for the prep day (day 1)
- You will be fasting (liquids only) and might not have lots of energy
- Don’t plan anything for the actual day (day 2)
- You can’t drive for 12 hours afterwards
- You may be tired and not have much energy to do anything
- (some people feel fine right after…. I was tired)
- Give yourself some space to take a nice nap when you get home.
Supplies to have on hand BEFORE you start.
- Whatever the doctor prescribes for the cleaning out portion
- This is important — it is worth paying the extra money for the one that requires less drinking. It cost me an extra $100, but worth it.
- Something to mix the powder with —- usually Gatorade of some kind is suggested
- Also ask about the pill version – it also may not be covered completely by insurance, but I hear it is more pleasant.
- Life savers
- Green Jell-O
- Herbal Tea
- Clear drinks
- Vaseline (big jar with lid that comes off)
- Baby Wipes
- Stool softener (NOT Dulcolax Pink— that is the wrong kind)
- Preparation-H (in case you get hemorrhoids)
- Garbage Can with Liner
- Toilet Bowl Cleaner and Brush
- Old Towel
- Adult Diaper
- Comfy Chair
- Small table
Prep Day –
- Liquid Diet ideas
- broth (helped me feel like I had a meal)
- life savers to suck on was more satisfying than another drink
- green jell-o blast from the past tasted familiar and added a little fun
- hot herbal tea – was super, especially further along in the process when I definitely wasn’t hungry, but needed a little warm support
- When you have to drink the prep stuff
- Make sure it is cold
- Use a straw
- Have hot tea handy… it was a nice thing to have a sip of that in between the long sips of the prep
- Have an iPad and be prepared to stream some shows
- Definitely can’t focus on reading during the cleansing portion of the day
- I streamed Schitt’s Creek, which felt very “in theme” for the experience
- Have a charger cord ready, because you may watch so long your battery will run out!
- Bring in a tiny table to the toilet area
- To put the ipad on, so you don’t have to hold it
- I also put my Vaseline and wipes there so they were handy.
- If you can, put a comfy chair near the bathroom.
- It was nice to be set up all comfy near my bathroom
- So, between pooping I had a quiet, comfy place to wait until I had to poop again.
- Have a blanket handy in case you get cold.
- Line a small garbage can with double plastic bags
- This is where you will put the baby wipes after you wipe and also the Vaseline covered TP
- This will protect your plumbing, so flushes go down easy
- Baby wipes
- These feel nice and cool on your bummy.
- Use to dab clean after each poop
- Then use your best friend Vaseline to protect
- Vaseline is your new best friend
- Use liberally starting with your very first poop!
- I found it most helpful to get a big jar and use toilet paper to scoop some out and then apply on the pertinent area.
- Use it EVERY time and use a lot! I did this and never got any burning.
- Have Toilet bowl cleaner and brush handy.
- I cleaned it 2 or 3 times throughout the pooping experience.
- It somehow made things seem a bit better also cut down on lingering smell
- Poo-Pourri may be nice to have on hand.
- Give a quick spray or two after you flush, so it is ready before your next poo
- Cutting down on the smell.
- It is nice to lay an old towel down on the ground between your comfy chair and toilet
- Just in case you don’t make it to the toilet in time.
- Underwear is optional!
- Makes it faster to get on the toilet
- OR – use an adult diaper
- In case you feel you need them during the prep day
- Or sleeping in the middle of prep day/night
- ALSO, some people feel a little nervous getting in the car to drive to the procedure.
- Having an adult diaper to wear for the drive may give you confidence
The actual procedure
- If you are a lady, wear skirt and flip flops…
- Sometimes you can wear the skirt for the procedure, and it is super easy to get redressed after.
- The procedure is the easy part.
- You get checked in and they take you back,
- They give you anesthesia and within 20 seconds you are asleep.
- You wake up and all is done.
- Don’t plan anything for this day either – except to rest.
- since I didn’t get much sleep the night before I took a LONG nap and then just chilled.
- I wasn’t supposed to drive for 12 hours after, so luckily I had an extra person to drive Bryson where he needed to be later that afternoon.
- For some reason I thought I just couldn’t drive home and would be ok after a few hours.
My overall impressions of my colonoscopy experience.
It wasn’t fun.
But it was doable.
I would say a 4 out of 10 on the discomfort scale.
It was more just kind of gross than anything.
*** Timing Idea
- And tiring, since I had a 6:30 am appointment, I had to finish my second set of drinks by 1:30 am, which had me pooping until 4.
- In retrospect, I think I would have preferred a later appointment and been able to sleep after my first pooping round, which ended around 11pm.
- I could have slept until 5 am and taken my second round of drinks, giving my body a bit more of a rest between pooping.
Having something to watch really helped and the Vaseline was a life saver!
I think that the poop in a cup is a good option, if you just really refuse to do the colonoscopy. It is better than nothing!
However, for me it was worth 2 days of my life to make sure my colon is healthy.
The uncomfortable part was only 6 hours or so and it was very manageable.
Super glad I don’t have to do it again for 10 years, but when it is time, I feel prepared with my tools to make it easier.