Thanks, Seeker, for posting the links. There is a lot of good information on them.
However, I would disagree about bacterial problems associated with enemas or colonics. Provided the water is purified or distilled, and all instruments are either disposable or disinfected and autoclaved (as is done with all surgical instruments), there is no risk of bacterial contamination. And contrary to one of the sites, enemas/colonics are not habit forming. In fact, they can assist in re-establishing normal peristalsis so that the colon functions more efficiently on its own.
Both of these sights suggest the use of fiber to alleviate constipation, and one of them refers to fiber as a 'bulk laxative'. Fiber is not a laxative. Adequate fiber is essential for healthy digestive functioning and has numerous health benefits. However, it is not always appropriate.
An anecdotal story: I recently had a client come in for a colonic
because she was so constipated and bloated that she was in considerable pain. She had traveled to Africa in the early part of the summer and began experiencing bowel trouble there that did not subside when she returned home. Her doctor wanted to test her for parasites, but she was unable to provide a stool sample for analysis. Her constipation continued and she eventually went to the emergency room in severe pain. They performed a scan, confirmed that she was indeed very impacted and sent her home with instructions to begin taking fiber. She also began eating a very high-fiber diet thinking that this would clear up her problem. After several more days of constipation she came in for a colonic. I have never seen anyone pass the massive quantity of fecal material (not mucoid plaque, mind you!) that she eliminated, and it cleared up all the pain and distension she had been experiencing. Telling her to take fiber was the worse thing they could have suggested! Enemas and colonics
used to be routinely performed in hospitals...it is unfortunate that 'more sophisticated' treatments have taken the place of simple measures that bring immediate relief.