The actual colonoscopy procedure itself isn't bad, but most people dread the idea of this procedure as much as they dread the idea of having a hemorrhoid. This is because the preparation process is long and difficult for many people. The colon needs to be totally clean so the doctor can see if there are any potential polyps or spots that might indicate colon cancer. This typically includes following a liquid diet the day before the procedure, drinking a foul tasting liquid and spending a lot of time on the toilet. However, there are some things you can do to make the whole process a little less unpleasant.
Mix the Liquid
The magnesium citrate or PEG prep liquids can be hard to get down on their own, but can be mixed with any other clear liquid that isn't red, blue or purple in color. Some people find that mixing it with Gatorade or the lemon or orange flavors of Crystal Light powder can make it easier to get down. Using the powder allows you to make the flavor double strength and better mask the taste of the prep liquid.
Use a Different Liquid
Some doctors are now allowing patients to use a different prep procedure involving a mix of Miralax and Gatorade, which many patients find to be less unpleasant and easier to swallow. However, some people do find it makes them a bit nauseous, requiring a separate anti-nausea medication to get it all down.
Opt for Pills
A newer option that's a bit harder on the kidneys but easier to swallow is oral sodium phosphate tablets. This eliminates the need for bad tasting liquids, as the tablets can be taken with your choice of clear liquid. Just be sure to drink liquids that provide electrolytes, as otherwise these tablets can cause electrolyte imbalances and dehydration.
Some people recommend a split dose method, where the total prep liquid dose is split into two separate occasions, one the day before and another about 6 hours before the procedure, to make the process easier. Other people recommend making the liquid very cold, holding your nose and drinking with a straw to help get down the bad tasting liquids.
Begin the Process Earlier
Colonoscopy preparation instructions typically state to go on a liquid diet starting the day before the procedure but starting the whole process a bit earlier can help make it a bit easier. Start eating a low fiber diet a few days before the procedure and there will be less in the colon that will need to be cleaned out, making it so the prep causes less of an issue with unpleasant diarrhea.Share
3 September 2015
When my mother fell at home and broke her hip, we all thought that we were going to have no choice to put her in a nursing home when she got out of the hospital. My mother had always asked us kids to avoid putting her in any kind of home, but we didn’t know what else we could do. None of us were capable of giving her the kind of rehabilitation and care that she needed. Then her doctor suggested that we find out if her insurance covered in-home care. I didn’t even know that that was an option. I was pleased to discover that in-home care was covered by her plan. Now she gets great care from nurses and nurse assistants that come right to her in her home, where she wants to be. It’s a great option, and I’m so glad we have it.