LivelihoodMeal, Clothing etc.
Even with a stoma, there is basically no need for dietary restrictions. However, the below tips may be
of use in the future if you keep them in mind.
1) Eat your meals regularly and make sure to chew well.
2) Be careful of obesity and try to maintain an ideal body weight. If your body shape changes, you may not be able to use the appliances you have been using.
3) Take 30 food items a day considering nutritional balance. Try to eat side dishes as well, and not just the staple foods.
4) Consider the quality and quantity of fat, and refrain from taking too much.
5) Keep salt content below 10g a day and refrain from taking too much.
6) Enjoy your meals. Food digestion can be impaired due to stress, worries, and anxiety.
＊If your doctor instructs you to take a diet therapy due to a symptom such as kidney disease, diabetes or high blood pressure, please make sure to follow his/her instructions.
Liquor / cigarette
There is a saying that "good wine makes good blood" but drinking too much can cause diarrhea or other
symptoms that may affect your stoma. Cigarettes on the other hand is said that it "does much harm but no
good" and this is true for everyone,
not just ostomates.
However, it is better to limit them to an appropriate amount rather than forcibly quitting them and feeling stress.
If you are passing too much gas
You are breathing in air when you are smoking, which increases the amount of gas inside your body, so you should reduce the number of cigarettes.
Basically, it does not matter what you wear. However, you should avoid anything that puts a lot of
pressure on the stoma. If your belt is at the position where it touches your stoma, consider using
suspenders to keep your pants up.
Stockings are fine but avoid anything that tightly fits your body such as girdles and try to wear loose underwear. If you want to wear girdles, make a hole at the position where the stoma touches.
If you wear a white blouse or something that is made of transparent material and you are using a transparent stoma bag, the excrement or the bag may show. Flesh-type stoma bag will be less noticeable.
Bathing / Shower
Bathing not only cleans your skin but also improves blood circulation and metabolism, relieves stress, and
relaxes the mind and body. In Japan, hot springs and public baths have long been popular as relaxation
However, many people are worried that it will have a bad effect on the stoma. There is no need to worry, taking a bath will not cause any problems with your stoma.
Make sure to avoid taking it for 1 hour right after you eat, choose a timing when you have less bowel movement and bathe regularly.
Question (1) Does the hot water enter my body through the stoma?
The internal pressure of the body is higher than the water pressure of the bath, so hot water does not enter your body.
Even if you take a bath without an appliance, you do not have to worry about hot water getting into your body through the stoma. However, since the stoma does not have a sphincter muscle that suppresses defecation, the intestines are active even when you are bathing and stool may come out with gas. It is safer to wear appliances (your regular ones or some special items) when you take a bath.
Urine is constantly coming out, so it is better if you keep your appliance on.
If you have a catheter, make sure you bathe with an appliance on.
Question (2) I am worried of what other people would think.
Other people are not looking at you as much as you think they are. If you use a bathing appliance, you may not have to worry about others as much.
Question (3) Can I bathe with my appliance on?
You can bathe with your appliance on as normal/usual. If your appliance does not have protective tape, you can prevent the surrounding of the faceplate from melting by putting waterproof tape around it.
Also, if you are using a two-piece ostomy system, it is recommended to bathe with both the faceplate and the stoma bag on because the faceplate dissolves more easily if it touches the water.
Dispose the excrement collected in the bag before bathing.
If your stoma bag uses non-woven fabric, gently wipe it with a towel after bathing. Leaving it wet may cause rashes or wet your clothes.
If you pass too much gas, we recommend you choose an appliance with a filter. If you have a lot of bowel movements due to watery stools (especially ileostomy), make it a habit to empty your stoma bag before going to sleep.
Also, when traveling, it may be better to take waterproof sheets or disposable diapers with you if you are worried about getting the bed dirty.
Connecting a urine collection bag to your stoma bag saves you the trouble of draining urine when you are sleeping.
To collect urine smoothly, you should keep the bag at a position lower than your stoma. It may be good to hang the bag on the side of your bed.
Connecting the urine collection bag
《A two-piece ostomy system》
Turn the direction of the stoma bag, which is facing down during the daytime, about 45 degrees diagonally. After that, simply connect the urine collection bag to your appliance and the connection tube should not be twisted.
《A one-piece ostomy system》
Since the orientation of the bag cannot be changed, the tube needs to be passed between and under your legs. This way, the tube should not be twisted and the connection part should not come off, making it easier for you to turn over when you are sleeping.
Sexual intercourse / Child birth
Even if you have a stoma, you can have sexual intercourse as well as pregnancy and childbirth. Consult
with your doctor for guidance when you have a plan to get pregnant.
Surgery for creation of stoma may cause sexual dysfunction for men. However, you should consult with your doctor first because this may be treatable. For women, the vagina may become narrower or it may become dry and lubricants can be helpful.
Manners concerning sexual intercourse
*Choose an appliance that does not leak odors or a small appliance (such as a mini pouch).
*Discharge the excrement collected in the stoma bag in advance.
*Try out a position where the stoma bag does not bother you.
*It may be good to put a cover on the bag, which can suppress the frictional noise of the bag and prevent the contents of the bag from showing.
As your physical strength recovers and you become more confident with your daily life, it is natural of you to feel the same sexual desires as you used to before your surgery. Sexual intercourses also have a mental affect and it is important to interact with your partner with kindness. Even if things do not go in the way you want, do not blame yourself or your partner and cherish your interactions.
Exercising gives you a positive effect on your body to relieve stress as well as maintain your healthy
body like bathing does. It also has the effect of increasing your appetite and promoting your sleep.
Why don't you start with a light exercise such as walking and gradually get used to exercising?
However, make sure to avoid intense exercise such as judo or rugby that could hurt your stoma. Also, consult your doctor if you want to try a sport where you strongly use your abdominal muscles such as weightlifting.
When you exercise, make sure to keep the below points about your appliance in mind.
Make sure you dispose the excrement collected in your stoma bag before you start.
Also make sure to prepare one or two sets of spare appliances and replace them as soon as possible when you sweat. You can also use fixing belts to fix your appliance more firmly and they can prevent it from peeling off.
Water does not enter your body through the stoma, which is same as bathing.
The faceplate should not be dissolved as much if you use an appliance with a tape. If you are using an appliance without a tape, you should to put waterproof tapes around the faceplate. Also, men should use trunks type swimwear and women should use one-piece type swimwear. Your appliance should be less noticeable if you wear a patterned swimwear rather than a plain one. If it still worries you, we recommend you use a one-piece ostomy system.