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Need A Good Airing

Posted by Dancingthrough, on Mon Dec 10, 2018 11:05 am

hello everyone.  I’m a newbie.  Had my surgery on October 23/18 - irreversible colostomy.  I’m coping quite well and grasping this new world.  I’d like to air the skin that gets covered up by the flange.  What can I do with my stoma for an hour or so to stop the poop from dropping all over the place.  Is there some kind of stopper I can get?  Look forward to suggestions.  Thanks

Reply by Pirrip, on Mon Dec 10, 2018 1:03 pm

Hi newbie! I'm no expert, had my stumpy thing about 18mnths, eventually you will find when your tummy has  its quiet times, usually evenings for me, but depends on when and what you eat .... then you can relax a bit between bag changes, after clean up, just keep a few tissues handy....                                                                   You never stop learning in this game and there is new stuff coming out to make things easier.  Others may offer more learned advice.... Bill?   lol


Reply by Past Member, on Mon Dec 10, 2018 1:30 pm

Hi Dancing,

Sorry to hear about things...but I'm in the same position, so  know what you're going through.  It gets easier after you get used to thing.  Like Bill said, you'll learn when your system gets quiet and you can do the airing out thing.   You'll probably hear this again, but if you have a colostomy, you may be able to do the irrigation thing.  You'll probably find that to be super if you do it.  It makes you feel almost normal...and you can air your skin out as many hours as you want to.  Good luck to you'll become a pro in no time.  


Reply by Pabs72, on Mon Dec 10, 2018 2:17 pm

Hi, this answer may only apply to me, but here goes - I’m six months in with my permanent colostomy and I find a nice warm/hot bath seems to stop any activity with my stoma for the duration and a little while after my soak. I tend to be careful and have plenty of dry wipes or tissue around me, but I always air dry and let my skin have a well earned break before applying a new pouch. I second the irrigation suggestion, I’ve just started down that toad and I’m actually irrigating as I’m typing he he! 

Best of luck with everything! 

P x

Reply by Pabs72, on Mon Dec 10, 2018 2:18 pm

Road not toad!!! LOL 

Reply by Dancingthrough, on Mon Dec 10, 2018 2:59 pm

I am very interested in the irrigation idea.  My surgeon just told me last week to wait for about six months before experimenting. The warm bath sounds good snd I will give it a try.  Thanks to both of you and hopefully we will tack again.  Take care

Reply by Bill, on Tue Dec 11, 2018 3:00 am

Hello Dancingthrough. 

Welcome to MAO and thank you for inviting us to comment on your situation. My first thought is you might have misheard the advice from your surgeon. Mine advised to leave it for six 'weeks' before irrigating. However, everyone is different and there might be different circumstances in your case to take into consideration. The sooner you can get started with irrigating, the sooner these sorts of problems will be part of your past.

Don't be afraid of doing a bit of experimentation with different things to see what affects your stoma in different ways. Phab's idea of a hot/warm bath seems like a good idea - but it wouldn't have worked for me because hot/warm water stimulated my stoma to relax and expel anything immediately inside. However, cold water had the opposite effect, causing the stoma to shrivel and close up the whole, which stopped output for the time it was shrivelled. Early on, one of the manufacturers gave me a plastic cup to rinse the stoma. I still use that but noticed last week that my daughter's yogurt pot was exactly the same shape and would have done the same job. I'm sure an ordinary cup would do it, but the plastic containers are see-through, which enables us to see exactly what is happening and when. You could use something similar to see what effect hot/warm  and cold water has on your stoma. 

I find that these little pots are great for cleaning the stoma area when I don't have the time or inclination to bath or shower.

Also, I have recently taken to using an incontintence pad under my hernia belt  to soak up any output whilst I GIVE THE STOMA A REST FROM MY NORMAL ROUTINE. I'm not sure how, or if,  this would work if you are not irrigating but it might be worth a try.

Best wishes


Reply by iMacG5, on Tue Dec 11, 2018 4:48 pm

Don't discount the power of a marshmellow or two.  I just don't know if constipation might result.  Let's just ask for more opinions.



Reply by Puppyluv56, on Tue Dec 11, 2018 9:16 pm

Hi Dancing!

Welcome to the site! I had a tough time when I first had my surgery! I could hardly change my pouch without pooping all over the place! Lol It was horrible and not sure I would have survived without all the help of the folks here! I found pouch systems better than others but less than perfect! Leaks all the time and made me crazy! Lol Irrigation changed the whole game! After I irrigate, on Appliance change day, I always shower with no pouch and usually let my skin air out while I get ready and then put on a new pouch. I only change appliances  every 6 or so days so get to do that once a week! Feels good! I think we are all different but I am not sure what your Doctor is waiting on for that long! I would think as long as you Stoma has healed, you should be good! I started about 3 months and only because I did not have a great Ostomy care system! 





Reply by Dancingthrough, on Wed Dec 12, 2018 8:27 am

Looks like I’m going to be a busy girl. Thanks for all the good advice.  Irrigation is truly looking like something I want to try.  I’ll just have to order the equipment and start reading on how to do it.  I also like the cup idea Bill. 

Reply by Puppyluv56, on Wed Dec 12, 2018 5:45 pm


just google Ostomy irrigating and watch the utube videos. Many different ways and preferences! We all have usd what fits us best . Irrigation supplies is also a personal preference. I have been using Convetec 2 piece pouch, sleeve and irritate bag. It is all of nothing. The irrigation sleeves for only their product companion! I have jut ordered the Coloplast kits and all that goes with it. I really liked the Coloplast one piece, my fav as far as 1 piece. I wanted to try the 2 piece but had all the Convetec  supplies. I will then determine which I want to continue using! Pretty sure it will be Coloplast. Any water bag will work as long as you have the cone that fits. I would certainly ask the companies for samples of their 2 piece Nd the irrigation sleeves to fit. Better than buying something you don’t like and not have coverage for something else for a month or so. Good luck on this! You will certainly find some freedom!


Reply by Dancingthrough, on Thu Dec 13, 2018 4:19 pm

Thanks puppyluv

Reply by Puppyluv56, on Thu Dec 13, 2018 10:38 pm

Always Glad to help with any questions you may have! 


Reply by anyark, on Thu Dec 20, 2018 1:52 pm


I change my appliance in the morning when my stoma is quieter.  I sit on my bed on a large towel.  I have paper towels, a bowl of warm water and a garbage bag, in case he spits, which he often does.  Because I want my skin to breathe for a while, I stay there 15-30 minutes before putting on a new appliance.  This is simple and works well for me.

Reply by pietrzak, on Thu Dec 20, 2018 5:16 pm

Best time to change bag is first thing in the morning when you get up, do not eat, this will buy you some time

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