Talk to others with an Ostomy
Next >

Ostomy Bag issues, hacks and products?


 I noticed online while searching youtube that there are "ostomy hacks". Such as wearing the bag sideways. Have any of you tried this? What are other hacks that you can do? My other question is has anyone found something they find works best for leaks? Also, on average how often does everyone change their bag? Im trying to gather a "average" so that i can use this information on educating people. Thanks! 

Talk to others with an Ostomy
29,496 members
MeetAnOstoMate is the largest, independent website for people with an ostomy surgery. A vibrant, multi-topic community where people discuss various things, and give each other love and support.

Wearing the pouch sideways or almost sideways!! I do this when I play golf or go bowling, and at times doing yardwork and such. I put it on that way keep it snug to my body so it doesn't shift or move around. Seems to work okay. As far as leaks go, I guess your talking about the opening on the drainable pouches. I  swithched from the drainable to the closed ened pouches also Hollister New Image, they are a bit smaller then the drainable. But the good thing with them is when you soil it just toss it out and replace it. My insurance alotted me 20 drainables per month as opposed to 60 closed end per month, so that's 2 a day on the average. No brainer for me, many days I only use 1 pouch per day so I manage to build up a spare inventory and never run short. I hope this helps!! Snappy profile photo by the way!! LOL


I have a colostomy and usually change once a day, but sometimes twice and occasionally 3 times or not at all. I guess it depends on what I have been eating. I use Hollister products and get about 7 days before I have to replace everything. In the shower I made a little shower curtain that I ware.  It helps keeps the appliance dry and lasting longer. I use the regular or mini pouches with a cover or belt to keep things in place. If my flange starts to lift a bit I use some water proof tape to hold it down till I  get around changing it. I would like to see the results you get.


Hi, I had my ileostomy over 4 years ago and use convex drainable pouches. A hospital nurse thought it a good idea to put my pouch on sideways; fine if I was using a bedpan, but emptying it in a washroom was pretty difficult.

Using Hollister convex bags, I used to achieve 2 to 3 days between changes but this reduced to 1 to 2 days twelve month back due to their new 'improved' filter soiling quickly. I had changed my supplier when I went over to using Eakin Cohesive Slim seals with my pouch. So when I was looking for alternative pouches, I asked Pelican Healthcare for samples of theirs. With both the Eakin Seals and the Pelican pouches I knew instantly I put them on that they were both a huge improvement on previous types, for me, security and comfort were second to none and I now achieve 4 to 5 days between changes and no longer worry about leakage.

We are all different shapes and sizes and suffer various problems with our pouches and accessories. However, using trial and error, we can eventually achieve the correct regime and learn to live with our disability.

Hope this helps. Regards, John


I cut two small slices in the flange to create a flap. If my stool is small the flap stays closed. If my stool is lage the flap opens and lets it pass easily. I cut the flap so that it will be on the upside of my flange opening after I apply the flange.


I have an illeostomy so my comments may not work for you, but I found that using a small closed pouch works when I am working oht, but I also bought wraps that hold the bag great when I need to be able to drain the bag and don't want to mess with dealing with the mess from the enclosed pouch. My biggest problem was the smell and the only thing I found that works on that is the Diamond pouches you put in after draining and cleaning the pouch. It must have charcoal in the pouch since it comes out black when I am emptying my pouch.  I hope this helps, and you can do a sears on wraps and they will all come up, and they very in price depending on what kind you want and if you want one that is more water proof.


I attach velcro the outlet of my hollister pouch so it doesn't dangle so much - Coloplast has this built-in, but Hollister doesn't and it's annoying without the "hack" :)   I posted a video of it on youtube. 


I swim a lot and wear my bag sideways for that so it fits better under my bathing suit


I use a 2 piece bag and sometimes wear it sideways. I tied a ribbon around the support belt the width of the bag at the opening to support the bag. Then I don't need an expensive stealth belt to support it. I have photos at this site.


I use a two piece convatec, sometimes a two piece hollister  with NO filter. If it gets gas bloated I burp it like tupperware. Always lubricate the edge of the ring with water, or deoderant lubricant and listen for the snap as you push it closed. I also cut a small "v" in the outer flap to make it easier to open and empty and when I fold it shut I attatch a small dollar store all metal binder clip for extra security. At home I rotate rinsed out used bags and only use a new bag if I am going out for the whole day. I use a convex face plate, convatec has a turtle. I sometimes prefer the two piece hollister as it has in my opinion a better adhesive. The good thing about the two piece is that you can detach it in a private bathroom and with dampened toilet paper clean out what is stuck to the inside of the face plate. or clean it out in with a shower attatchment. Sometimes I use an extra skin prep to minimize staining of the face plate tape, or clean it with hydrogen peroxide. Ileostomies can be difficult with hernias and adhesions. I do use Miralax for bolus plugs that interns incorrectly call constipation. My surgeons gave me this advice but check with your own doctor if this is a problem. I use the generic propolyne glycol but use it rarely. Smetimes  grape juice works to get things moving.  I stopped eating a lot of grains like brown rice as they expand inside you, white rice minimally. I have no problem with Thai rice noodles and I do use the shaved dark green tops of broccoli. Hummus is also no problem but forget grape leaves and taboulee etc. I warn against using the bags more than five or six times as they tend to deteriorate where the snap ring joins the bag and can leak there. You save money with the two piece system as the face plate can last up to four days (for me), and I can rotate three or four rinsed bags for as much as two weeks.

One other tip is that I sometimes cut a line close to the top of the elastic on my underwear and pull my attatched bag through it so the bag lies on the outside of my briefs. I presently can use a tucked in tee shirt to cover the bag. I do this as I want to prevent UTI's by seperating the bag closure from coming even indirectly near the urethra. If you use a plastic curved clip with a hook closure you can also re-enforce it with a one centimeter O ring available at most hardware that acts like a rubber band but much stronger. This prevents the clip from seperating as it weakens with age. Warning in that the hinge can eventually wear out eventually and break on that end.

A lot of people do not trust two pieces but if the ring is lubricated with a smidgeon of deoderizing lubricant or even plain water it is much easier to snap on and off, and in the case of gas burp it. I avoid the filter bags as I often find the filters do not work and the bag seems thinner.


I have an ileostomy and I use a 2 piece Convatec moldable durahesive flange with open end pouch. I've worn mine sideways since the first week. The day before I had surgery an ostomate came into my room at the hospital and showed me how she wore hers sideways. It's worked out for me just fine.


The Ez Vent is a great little gadget to let the air out of your pouch without having to open the bottom of the pouch.

Cinderella11126 wrote:

 I noticed online while searching youtube that there are "ostomy hacks". Such as wearing the bag sideways. Have any of you tried this? What are other hacks that you can do? My other question is has anyone found something they find works best for leaks? Also, on average how often does everyone change their bag? Im trying to gather a "average" so that i can use this information on educating people. Thanks! 

Hi, I recv'd my colostomy only last year so I am still a newbie I guess. However I do on occasions wear my pouch slightly angled on to my tummy as sometimes depending on what activity I am doing the end of it can dig into my leg.,I have also found it useful to put a light smear of Vaseline on the front of my base it makes for easier cleaning? Use Convatec two piece with Velcro closing on pouch, I have never had any probs. with leakage. I use anywhere from one to three a day depending on what I eat. 


Hi all

I use a combination of drianable bags and closed. I use the Velcro closure bags when out and about, golfing, car travel etc. Find I have to tape the end of bag up as it is too long and the plastic closure bangs on me and irritates. I use plastic medical tape as it’s easy to tear pieces off. Have to remember to carry a roll in jacket pocket have one in car etc. I make these bags last 4 days as allotted 10 per month. You can wash them out if u have a laundry sink, I don’t have that in my apt.

i use the closed bags at home and at night , I empty the output and reuse as long as I can. One hack is I store the used bags in a large coffee can with a good lids. This hides them and keptaway odors

my main problem is controlling gas. I find the vents in the bags do not work at all so have to 


* Please, do not post contact information, personal information or advertising.
All times are GMT - 5 Hours