Some Important Facts To Know About Living Life With An Ostomy Bag
An ostomy is a medical procedure that involves creating a hole in the abdomen's stoma to allow bodily waste to pass into a bag that's inserted over the hole instead of letting the waste exit the body through the rectum. This procedure may be needed if you've been diagnosed with a certain condition that affects the urinary or digestive system that could be fatal if you don't get an ostomy. Here are a few facts that you should know about wearing an ostomy bag if you need an ostomy procedure.
Your ostomy bag won't be obvious to other people.
You might feel self-conscious in the beginning as you get used to your ostomy bag, but you can rest assured that it won't be noticeable by other people if you wear it under your clothes. Even if you're wearing clothes that are tighter on your body, most people still won't be able to tell that you have an ostomy bag even if you see a slight bulge. The sounds of waste emptying into your bag also likely won't be noticed by other people.
Most foods are okay to eat.
It will still be possible to enjoy many of your favorite foods even when you have an ostomy bag. Certain foods, however, may need to be limited if you experience excess gas or other unpleasant reactions after consuming them. Some foods that are known to cause some adverse effects for people who have undergone ostomies include raw vegetables, dairy products, and high-fat foods. However. you'll still likely be able to eat these foods as long as you do so in moderation.
Emptying your bag on schedule will be important.
To prevent infections or other complications, you will need to empty and change your bag at regular intervals. Your bag should be emptied when it is approximately 1/3 full of waste. It's also important to change your bag every two to four days using scissors, stoma powder, and other ostomy supplies to remove the bag and attach a new one.
Bathing shouldn't be too cumbersome.
You likely won't have too much trouble taking a bath or shower with your ostomy bag. You can choose to either leave your bag attached or remove it while you're cleaning yourself with soap and water. Any soap that you use should be unscented to avoid irritating the ostomy area. For the best results, it's best to bathe during a time when your bowel activity is minimal.
Sexual intimacy is still possible.
You won't have to give up your sex life after you've had ostomy surgery. After you heal from your surgery, you can engage in sexual activities even when you have your ostomy bag attached, but you may need to make some adjustments to certain positions if they make you feel uncomfortable.
Certain changes should be expected in your life as you adjust to using an ostomy bag. However, you'll still be able to perform most functions and enjoy many of your favorite activities after you've healed from your surgery and become accustomed to wearing your bag.