If You Need To Splint When You Poop, It May Be A Sign Something Is Wrong

Woman heading to the toilet. Image credit: Aslysun/Shutterstock.com, TikTok/Zenny, TikTok/JessicaConway9, TikTok/Leah

Last week, a video explaining how to poop went viral on TikTok. Now we know that the TikTok generation is young, but not quite so young that they need instructions on how to take a dump – so to explain a little more, this is more of a next level "you've been taking a poo wrong your whole life" hack.

User Ambria Alice Walterfield first posted a video giving a reason why she was happy to have a vagina.

"You know when you're sitting on the toilet and you're struggling to go for a poo," she told the world, "but you can just like..."

At this point, she makes an ambiguous waggling motion with her thumb, which many people thought needed an explanation. 

"Hang on. Wait. What? I need to know what this is please!!!" one user said. "That's called the 'Adele' it's saying hello from the other side," added another. 

In a follow up video, she explained what the hell she was talking about.


"When you're constipated and like the poop is there but you can't quite push it out... it's like turtling," she said. "Just hook your thumb into your vagina and you can feel the poop, and you can just pop it out. You're welcome."

Many in the comments revealed that they have been doing this, some of whom have been doing it for quite some time.

The procedure had a name long before the Internet christened it "The Adele". Known as "splinting", the method is performed by some who have difficulty emptying their rectum, whether due to constipation or other medical conditions that make bowel movements difficult.

"Sometimes it is difficult to have a bowel movement without straining," the University of Michigan Health System write in their explanation of the process. "Perianal Pressure/Splinting is a way to help move the stool out of the anal canal."

The supplies you'll need, they list, are KY Jelly (optional), gloves (optional), a tampon or finger (mandatory). Then you get to work.


In vaguely related news.

"Lubricate your finger (1 or 2 fingers) or tampon (optional), insert into your vagina, and press back against the anus. This should help push the stool in your anal canal out."

The method is effective for some people, and can help to relieve constipation following childbirth. However, it's not something you should do regularly, and if you feel the need to do so it may be because something is wrong.

A study of 29 patients in 2013 looked at women at a urogynecology center who had difficulty defecating, and found that they manually splinted to relieve this. During an MRI, the women were asked to splint as they normally would during number 2 to explore whether there was a change in their pelvic anatomy that caused their problems.

"Most women in our study group who used manual splinting to assist in defecation are compensating for a pelvic floor defect that can be detected on MRI," the team wrote in the study.

Of these, 86 percent had a rectocele, which is a bulge from the back wall of the rectum into the front wall of the vagina, and 72 percent had a cystocele, where the bladder is prolapsed and bulges into the vagina. 

That's not to say that all people who splint will have this problem, but if you find you need to do it regularly in order to poop, it's best to consult with a physician in order to be sure there are no underlying medical issues causing the issue, or at least to get the constipation under control.


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