Know The Time When To Change Ostomy Bag
Let’s get right to it. When to change an ostomy bag is a very important question. You are very new to having an ostomy. You know very little about this whole thing.
You will be looking at this question from probably one of these two points. Either you had the surgery to receive a stoma as an almost emergency situation or this was a long term planned out an option to treat an ailment that you had been living with for an extended period of time.
My Ostomy Came In Treatment For Cancer
Like I was stating it is for one reason or another that you now have an ostomy. My reason is that I was diagnosed with stage 3 colorectal cancer. This operation was a step and a part of a whole package which was designed to heal me from cancer. Thankfully, that plan worked for me.
Now I have a stoma. I deal every minute of my life now with an ostomy. So whatever your path to this lifestyle you have needed to settle on the fact that you have a stoma. You use ostomy pouches and all of us have much in common from this point onward.
When I Change My Ostomy Pouch
I have over time have developed a great feel for when I need to change my ostomy bag. Let me cover how it works for me. Remember as well that your story may be different and what I do just may not work for you.
I have measured time period when I know I should be changing my ostomy bag. I changed my pouch on Saturday, now I go 4 days wearing and using my current pouch. When my 4 days are up, it’s time to change out my pouch.
Why do I do this? Because I know myself and I know that if I go 5 days or 6 days, I will be inviting problems.
Planning Out Changing My Bag
For more information on how to plan out when my bag is due to be changed and also other great changing your ostomy bag thoughts you can go to another post I made, When to Change an Ostomy Bag Brings Much Anxiety.
Other Ways That I Know It’s Time To Switch Out My Ostomy Bag
Here’s a list of other tale-tell signs that maybe it’s time to switch.
- When I am emptying the pouch it is getting soiled. Its appearance is one of being worn from use.
- I am starting to feel that I really want to itch it, are close to or under where my pouch is adhered to my skin. Itching is never good. BEWARE!
- Inside the pouch it is getting a worn look, plus it is starting to have a large odor from using it.
- I can see that I need to shave close to the adhered area. This will mean it is also getting hairy underneath the adhesive area. This will cause irritation as well.
- It has been warm and I wash down because I having been perspiring much more than normal. Again irritation happens in this situations very easy.
- If I have been disruptive with increasing bag activity from different foods I have eaten or if I have been extra gassy, then I will need to change my bag more often.
Other Ostomy Special Situations To Be Ready For
A long road trip will require extra preparation, and you will need to be on an increased alert. You may think it’s all good, but maybe you just aren’t ready.
If you get into eating some food you are not used to eating in your normal diet, then you may experience a couple of things. You may end up going to the bathroom many more times than normal, or you may be gassier than normal, or worst of all you may be experiencing diarrhea more than normal.
I know from personal experiencing these all will wear down the effectiveness of the pouching system you are using. So be aware.
Last But Not Least-Dealing With When to Change Your Ostomy Bag
I guess the elephant in the room is this. There are so many choices of what you will find comfort in using, and ease in using for your pouching system.
I personally use a Hollister pouching system. I have been using the following system for over four years now. It works for me, I am, comfortable with the system and best of all it performs always at a very high level for me.
I believe my percentage is well below 5% of the time I may experience any problems with it. That is very good I believe.
I use the Hollister #14104 Skin Barrier Floating Flange and Tape, This has the center which features Forma-Flex.
I also use the Hollister #18114 Disposable pouch that is a Lock ‘n Roll pouch. Here are a few photos of what I currently use.
The key reasons I use this set is that I found out early in the discovery process that I really disliked using the cutaway plastic centers on the wafer-flange.
I was introduced to the forma-flex center choices, by my ostomy nurse. I find it is much more effective for use by me as well it is much easier to change, more convenient you know.
Like I have been saying, you may need to try different pairings, and/or different company’s products to see what works for you.
Factors that may make difference to you may be things like your weight, your sex, your age, your ability to handle what is involved with changing your ostomy pouch on the schedule you set up for yourself.
Also I have been told people have there ostomy’s set up in different areas on the abdomen area. Some are on the left, some on the right, some are not the same as the others because of the type of surgery they have had. So you will need to work this whole process out for yourself.
I believe I have presented enough evidence that you know now that this whole thing called Change Your Ostomy Bag is a very individual process.
When to change an Ostomy Bag-it needs time, hard work and persistence, but I know you will find your groove. What works most effectively for you.
God Bless and Good Luck!
Read More About The Ostomy Pouch and Needs That Come With It-View Related Posts Below
This is my view of my journey so far since the colo-rectal cancer treatments and surgery. The new every days of my life are explored
I have found that planning out when to change an ostomy bag helps me the most with the upkeep of having an ostomy.