Colon Cleanse in Lone Tree, CO

Expert Advice About Colonics

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This article is written by Sheila Shea. Director of Intestinal Health Institute, Spa & School for Colon Hydrotherapy. Located in Tuscon, Arizona. She has the absolute finest Institute for teaching colon hydrotherapy in the country. Sheila has 32 years of experience as a colon hydrotherapist. I can assure you that these are words from an expert.



A difficult colonic is an issue that comes up from time to time in Colon Hydrotherapy. The difficulty can be from many perspectives and primarily from the point of view of the therapist and the client. I begin with an initial question about the difficulty of releasing waste from the intestines. That question opens the door to other challenging issues during colonics.

I make the analogy with the 'sleeping dragon' to give yet another insight into why difficulties might occur during the process of receiving colonics.

"Unleashing the forces of the dragon, unleashing the powers of the gut, opening what has been asleep for many years if not decades is potentiated in intestinal healing. The colonic and the person have the power to awaken that which has not been stirred, has not been touched, has not been opened, has been left uncomfortable, ignored, poisoned, drugged, isolated, and alone. The intestines are the seat of personal power and energy. Awakening and enlivening this center brings power back to the person. The dragon awakens and takes space."

Many people come in for the first time and expect the colonic to instantly release all waste from their large intestine or colon. When it doesn't happen, some clients say, 'Why should I come back if nothing came out the first time? I'm empty; it's not really that effective.' When nothing comes out, I have a more difficult case on my hands. The ability of the person to eliminate or have material flow through their alimentary tract from mouth to anus without restriction. I call it 'awakening the sleeping dragon.' Then other levels of work can begin, such as cleansing the walls and balancing the flora.


A difficult first or sequential cleanse(s) can mean nothing comes out, very little comes out, or the person experiences pain or a deep sense of urgency when the 'dragon begins to awaken.'


I have learned to ask more questions over the phone and use my health questionnaire to assess a potential case in which nothing might come out the first time or in which a release will be difficult.

The therapist has to be sure that their phone conversation and uptake form eliminate any contra-indicated conditions. Also, clients might come in the first time with a situation they are either unaware of or which has not been diagnosed that might prevent elimination. If I get a sense something more serious might be going on, I ask the client to see their primary physician for a check-up to eliminate any organic or functional obstruction or pathology.


Dehydration is the initial reason for a difficult first cleanse, especially if the person is drinking less than one quart of fluid daily. The lack of fluid allows the hardening of waste in the gut. Dehydration may also affect the quality of intestinal muscle tissue and its ability to expand and contract properly.

Constipation is another potential cause. I ask the client how long has it been since their last bowel movement and what their bowel movements have been like.

Another cause is what I call the peanut butter effect. Some low-fiber diets and likely combined with insufficient fluids, can create a very sticky and thick elimination that gets stuck in the intestines, not to mention the speculum.

Other scenarios might involve exhaustion, abuse, hyperactivity, adrenalization, emotional upset, obesity, distended abdomens, and legal or illegal drugs. Some of these situations are related to the emotional body.

Some individuals have habitual holding patterns in the muscles that might be due to emotional imbalances, inflammation, and injury. Anything that causes someone to contract their muscles and does not allow them to return to the relaxation state can create a holding pattern, a constriction, a chronic tension, a state of perpetual or alternating contraction, a spasm, or paralysis. It may occur anywhere along the GI canal.

Some diseases like Hirschsprung's remove some of the intestinal nerve endings, and hence the gut muscles do not work. Some results of bowel inflammation (which can be the result of gut flora imbalance) may be paralysis or impairment of the nerves hence the muscles. Some inflammation leaves fibrotic tissue that is not flexible. Other types of inflammation leave narrowing with the potential for obstruction. Pain and nausea may be signs of this.

Some individuals have had one or many abdominal area surgeries during their life. The surgeries create adhesions that, in turn, can restrict or constrict passage through the lumen or tunnel of the gut.

Other Difficulties


Another situation is the urgency some of the first-timers feel. Nothing is coming out, and suddenly their muscles start moving, and the dragon awakens. I can feel their muscles expand under my hands; I can feel movement for the first time. At this point, some clients might say; they are going to let loose, or go all over the place, or they can't hold it, or they don't know how to let it go. Some clients feel so overwhelmed by their thoughts of what 'might' happen that they hold back or hold in, which is in opposition to the bodily movements that are occurring.

Some of the initial sessions with the first-timers are just the opposite. The muscles do not respond. The colonic is like CPR. The aim is to get the 'heart' going again or, in this case, to get the intestinal muscles to start pumping or 'peristaltic' as we say for the intestines. The aim is to get the muscles to expand and contract in a balanced rhythm like the heart. Breathing, massage, other subtle body therapies, and the introduction of water into the large intestines aid in this process.

In both modes, the colon hydrotherapy rehabilitates and retrains the gut muscles.

Pain and Discomfort

Sometimes, after lifelong constipation, there might be some discomfort with first colonics. The colon hydrotherapy process, over time, desensitizes the discomfort and allows you to relax and receive, and let go throughout the process. You'll get to know your 'intestines,' so to speak, and will have learned a more comfortable and functional way of relating to them.


Whenever I assess via the phone that I may have a difficult first cleanse, I ask the person to prepare for the first session by; drinking a gallon of fluids daily, making fruits and vegetables 50% of their diet, taking an enema or laxative the day(s) or night(s) before. This is volunteering on their part and is not required. I explain that it helps facilitate the colonic, removes some of the most hardened or sticky fecal matter, and allows them to have an easier and deeper cleansing. This is also going to be true of people who return. Hydration and preparation are key.

I use all the techniques I have to get the muscles working and all the coaching I know to direct the client. A deep abdominal breath is extremely important. I ask them to draw a deep breath into the area of the navel and pelvic floor slowly and easily with easy releases or exhales. I use a physical therapy massager on the abdomen and on the oblique muscles. I have found those areas to be the most effective to achieve release.

A difficult cleanse on the first visit indicates the need to do a series of sessions closer to awaken the gut muscles and get waste moving. A dozen sessions might be necessary to 'awaken the dragon.'

I might treat the first inflows like an enema. I have the person get up off the table and use the bathroom toilet to eliminate. I ask them if they think they can make it to the bathroom if urgency is the issue. Very often, the client asks to go to the bathroom, and I honor their request. This is all part of the session and is perfectly valid. While they are in the bathroom, I check if the speculum is blocked. The client sees if they can pass any hardened material, and if they want, they can return to the table. Getting rid of the hardened material is like breaking a dam. Afterward, the softer material can flow more easily.

Another technique I find works well is pumping the waste line rhythmically and continuously by hand while they breathe. Very often, reams of waste may come pouring out. The pumping has been essential in the process and has allowed many impacted, dehydrated, or urgent cleansings to go well. I also pump the line when I think the client may have blocked the speculum. That can happen with hard and sticky feces.

I can examine the speculum. It's worth taking the speculum out if I suspect it is blocked so I can either clean it out or eliminate a blocked speculum as the reason why nothing is coming out. Discomfort escalates with the combination of a blocked speculum and the peristaltic waves propelling material toward the rectum. Leakage might be a major result.

I try using different positions. Usually, the client lies on their back to receive the colonic. However, I may ask the client to shift on their left and /or right side and alternate various positions from side to back to the side. Occasionally, I ask the client to do small crunches or pull-ups for their abdominal muscles. At other times, I do hip joint manipulations, moving the legs one at a time toward the abdomen and then releasing them. The rotation of positions allows the intestines to assume positions that might be more beneficial for release.


This does not exhaust the possibility of tools and skills. Some therapists and clients use visualization techniques. Each person has his or her own specialty.

The client's action toward their healing is integral to the colonic process. The client addresses important issues such as high fluid, fruits and vegetables, appropriate proteins, electrolytes, and flora, exercise and therapy, rest, and meditation. The client builds up areas of insufficiency and calms areas over activity or excess.

My biggest responsibility is the education of the clients; to provide them a context in which their inability to eliminate is occurring, to let them know why it might happen, to give them the tools for releasing, to set forth a plan of sessions that will allow them to gradually let go. If it were so easy to come out, I would not be in business. That's the paradox. Most clients think they get hooked up, and everything flows out. Not so. About 10-20% of the clients I see have a difficult first cleanse with little coming out and/or with some urgency.

Some individuals can have this happen occasionally during their series of sessions. Some have had travels, surgeries, fights with their family members, overworked, poor diet, or little or no exercise or pain medication or antibiotics. Some have chronically poor elimination with tortuous or twisted, elongated or expanded intestines or past injury. Each time is a challenge. The more the client prepares, the better the session goes. As a rule of thumb, the client's elimination improves as they continue to progress through their series.

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