A stoma is the result of an ileostomy - a procedure which alters the way your body gets rid of waste. Instead of passing through the small or large intestines, waste will pass through a stoma and into a pouch. Caring for a stoma can be challenging, especially if you’re recovering from a very recent operation. However, it’s very important to keep the stoma in good condition, to avoid damage to the surrounding skin and to ensure the stoma continues to work properly.
Complications from Stomas
There are a number of complications that can arise when you have a stoma. These include:
- Skin irritation around the stoma. If not cared for and cleaned properly, the stoma can cause the skin around it to become inflamed, painful and even infected.
- Widening or narrowing of the stoma. This could cause the stoma to leak, putting you at risk of infection.
Many people also find it hard to clean their stoma - especially in the first few months after the procedure. If you’re struggling to adjust to life with a stoma, or if you need some advice on caring for your stoma, get in touch with a doctor or stoma nurse today.
Stoma Care Advice
The condition of your stoma will be directly affected by the foods which pass through your digestive system. There may be some foods that cause an adverse reaction and affect your stoma. These can include spicy food, fried food, or food that is high in fibre. If you have a stoma and are worried about your diet, contact a doctor for advice.
Many people worry that they won’t be able to exercise after having a stoma fitted. However, once you’ve recovered from your initial surgery, you should be able to exercise in any way you see fit. Speak to a doctor beforehand to see whether you’ll need to take any precautions before starting exercise.
There’s also a range of additional equipment that can help you manage your stoma more conveniently. From bags which are easier to change, to clothing with internal sections made to support the pouch during exercise, there are many products out there which can help make stomas more manageable. Get in touch with a GP now for fast medical advice.
The information provided is for educational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Seek the advice of a doctor with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never delay seeking or disregard professional medical advice because of something you have read here.