This post has been a long time coming. I originally had my colonoscopy back in September last year. I won’t be going into the NASTY details UNLESS you guys want that! If you do, message me and I’ll tell you all you want to know!
Before my first procedure, I read a lot of blogs that gave tips and tricks/advice for getting through it and it helped me a lot. Hopefully this will be one that someone runs across one day and it helps them!
My Top 15 tips for Prepping for a Colonoscopy:
- It’s not going to be fun so go ahead and just get over that silly idea.
There are nasty things to drink, you have to be on the toilet a lot, you have to fast…yea, it’s not fun BUT it’s something we all have to do at some point so just buy some super soft toilet paper and tell yourself “I can do this”.
- If the doctor says to eat a low residue diet for a few days before, it’s for good reason.
He or she went to school for this and they know what they’re talking about. Eat the low residue diet. It will be better for everyone if you do. Basically, eating low residue helps clean you out sufficiently. If you don’t get completely cleaned out before your procedure, the doctor will have a hard time seeing past what is left in your colon and could even cancel your procedure altogether.
- Talk about it if you want to talk about it.
If you’re anything like me, you’ll wanna talk about the fact that you’re getting one and there will be a small handful of people (depending on your network) that will think it’s gross and won’t wanna talk about it. Don’t worry about them. They will have to have one eventually and karma will get them. Talking helped me with the anxiety. I was able to laugh at myself. All in all, most people were very receptive. I mean, EVERYONE poops!
- Stay hydrated and steer clear of any alcohol the day of your prep.
I had ONE beer before my first colonoscopy and got so sick. It was a terrible idea. Not only did the prep taste disgusting but pairing that with beer on my tummy was not a good mix. Be smart, pass on the alcohol and drink lots of water and other clear liquids like yellow gatorade! You’ll thank me later!
- If you don’t do the prep correctly, you might have to reschedule your procedure and have to do the prep all over again another day.
Don’t be like me. Do the prep correctly. 🤦🏼♀️ I had to prep twice for my first one because of tip #4. Once you do the prep once, you will understand. THIS IS NOT A DRILL.
- Do learn to laugh at yourself.
This is a no brainer… it just helps.
- You’re going to sleep a lot the day of your colonoscopy. Prepare for that. Be okay with it. You will not get anything done. It’s okay.
I think slept for 4-5 hours after my procedure and it was the best sleep ever. I woke up and felt useless, so I just stayed in bed. This is OKAY. Plan for it.
- Make sure to eat a light breakfast the day before.
If you don’t, you will be so hungry by the time you get up the next day that you’ll wanna eat your arm and yell at everyone. So do yourself a favor, eat the light breakfast! You will be a nicer person the day of. I promise. The person driving you to your procedure will also be thankful.
- Buy a good smelling candle to burn the night of your prep.
You’ll feel better because it’ll smell nice around the bathroom and your housemates will appreciate it too.
- Vietnamese pho broth is the best thing ever for a prep and fits the bill as a clear liquid.
Get some and thank me later. Just don’t eat the noodles! That’s a big no-no.
- If you’re hella constipated like I am all the time, get extra laxatives just in case.
Don’t put yourself through having to prep twice. They have drinkable flavored laxative at the drugstore. Get 1-2 bottles JUST IN CASE. It doesn’t taste nearly as bad as the prep and you can mix it with Gatorade!
- Find a good show to watch while hanging in the bathroom.
Make sure there’s a lot of episodes.
- Wear comfy clothes to the procedure and try to relax before. You’re going to be fine. You’re not going to die.
I say this because I had a minor freak out right before and it was over nothing. Love me or hate me, I lived to tell y’all about it. If you have a tendecy towards anxiety, tell your doctor and they can even prescribe you something to chill you out the morning of.
- Take any medicine the doc prescribes you afterward and don’t try to be smarter than them.
I’m saying this primarily to myself as a reminder that I am in fact not smarter than my doctor. If they prescribe you a daily laxative, take it and smile. I didn’t take the meds my doc prescribed me after my first one and the ulceration in my colon got WAY worse. You do not want that. Trust me.
- Chalk the whole thing up to life experience.
Laugh it off and go on with your life.
Feel free to message me if you have questions. My email and socials are linked below!