Managing the skin around your stoma
Keeping the skin around your stoma in good condition is the most important thing you can do to make life with a stoma pouch secure, comfortable and worry-free.
Contact between stoma output and skin causes skin irritation that then affects how well the adhesive on the appliance sticks to your body. This creates a vicious circle of more leakage and even more irritated skin.
Keep your skin healthy following the next steps:
- Make sure your skin is clean and completely dry before applying the adhesive
- Adjust the hole in the adhesive so that it exactly fits around your stoma
- Make sure that there is full contact between the adhesive and your skin – use a bit of light pressure with your hand
- Change your appliance as instructed by your healthcare professional
- Make sure to use the stoma appliance and accessories most appropriate for your body profile
Choosing the right products
Every person has a different body and often this is changing over time. Changes in your body profile may be due to weight fluctuations, skin folds or scars on the skin, or hernia appearance associated with your stoma. Also, the size of the stoma changes after a while following the operation. When such changes occur, it is often necessary to either change the opening size of the adhesive or change the type of product and use additional skin care products.
There are two main types of systems:
The one-piece system consists of a bag with integrated adhesive which is completely removed during the change.
The two-piece system includes a baseplate that adheres to the body and a bag that is attached to the baseplate. In this case, you can remove and change the bag without having to change the baseplate at the same time.
The baseplate may also be flat or have a convexity (convex or convex light) to meet the different needs of the skin area anatomy.
Your healthcare professional will always consult you which are the right ostomy products for you.
Useful advice for proper application
Proper application of the bag or the baseplate around the stoma is very important as it ensures you have a healthy skin and the ability to enjoy your daily activities safely.
Keep always in mind that:
- Choosing the right product is the key for secure application. Consult your healthcare professional who monitors you to indicate if you should use an adhesive bag or a 2 pieces system with a bag and a baseplate, flat or convex baseplate.
- You should always clean, protect and moisturize your skin with special products after each change of bag / baseplate to have a healthy skin.
- The basepate or bag should be applied on dry, well-stretched skin.
- Do not forget to use a paste in cases where the skin around the stoma has folds or cavities, you have fluid stools or the stoma is flat, as to protect skin from irritation.
Personal hygiene, the correct frequency of changing the baseplate or the adhesive bag, as well as the proper use of the products is a prerequisite for maintaining the skin around the stoma healthy. The skin around the stoma should look the same as the rest of the skin on the abdomen.
Quite often skin irritations occur, which can be due to various causes such as, use of the wrong type or very frequent changes of the ostomy appliances, insufficient skin care with no specialized products.