A Modern Day Fairy Tale

Faith. Family. Fiction. Fun.

Living With Ostomy- How You Can Resume A Normal Life

An ostomy is a surgical procedure that involves making a temporary or permanent opening in the abdominal skin to eliminate urine or stool. The waste gets collected in a pouch, and you can empty it from time to time. While the procedure may be necessary to deal with health issues, it isn’t easy to deal with. As a patient, you can feel overwhelmed, and your family also bears the impact. Resuming a normal life may seem like a big feat. Thankfully, you can live a healthy and active life with your pouch, provided you know the basics of stoma care. Here are some tips to help.

Look after your pouch

After the procedure, your doctor will educate you about emptying and changing the pouch. You may seek the help of a family member initially, but some practice will make it easy to manage. Follow a regular schedule and empty the pouch when it is half full to steer clear of leakage. It is best to change the pouch when your bowel is less active, such as early in the morning.

Protect your skin

Since the stoma is an opening in the skin, it needs good care. Ensure that the pouch is a perfect fit for the opening. Clean the surrounding skin with water and let it dry when you replace the bag. But avoid using soap, lotion, or cream as it may prevent the barrier from sticking to your skin. If you notice any irritation in the area, report it to your doctor immediately.

Follow some diet rules

You can expect things to change a bit when a hole in your abdomen works as your bladder or bowel. But you can follow some simple diet rules after an ostomy to enjoy meals with your family. Learn to recognize foods that irritate your bowel and avoid them completely. Raw fruits and veggies, nuts, and corn are hard to break, so you can skip them. Stick to multiple small meals instead of three large ones. Chew well and drink plenty of water to keep your digestion on track.

Stay physically active

Even as having a pouch protruding from your body sounds scary, you can still enjoy an active lifestyle. You can try any activity you are comfortable with, as long as it does not involve much physical contact. Seek recommendations from your doctor about the safest exercises and optimal time to start them after the surgery. They can also guide you about the measures to keep your stoma safe while exercising or playing a sport.

Have sex but practice caution

If you want to resume normal life after an ostomy, you will be concerned about being sexually active. You can have sex after recovering from the surgery, but getting used to intimacy may take some time. The barrier is as much emotional as it is physical. Communicating openly with your partner can help you deal with self-consciousness. Also, make sure that your pouch is empty and clean before you indulge.

Women can also conceive after an ostomy. So it shouldn’t be a problem if you plan to start a family after the surgery. Just relax and try to get back to a normal lifestyle, and you will be fine.


Contact Form (Do not remove it)

back to top