How Often Should An Ostomy Pouch Be Changed
Getting used to life after an ostomy can be difficult. Apart from getting used to an ostomy pouch being present against your skin all the time, you also need to learn how often you need to change it. Unfortunately, there is no straightforward answer to this. It’s individual for every person. However, there are certain things to keep an eye out for that can help you set a routine for the best time to change an ostomy pouch.
Things That Affect Wear Time
Everyone’s metabolism is different, along with their comfort levels. This can affect how long you go between changes. While many people typically change their pouches every fours days, some factors that may increase the frequency of changes include:
- Your diet.
- The consistency of your output.
- Your activity levels or how much you perspire.
- The type of skin barrier you use.
- Skin products you use under the barrier.
Depending on factors like these, some people change their ostomy pouches every three to four days while others may feel more comfortable changing them every day or two. The activities you plan can also have an impact on when you change your pouch. Quite often, those who swim prefer changing their pouches before water activities as it makes them feel more confident.
When Should You Change Your Ostomy Pouch?
Ostomy care can seem intimidating at first. When you first start off using an ostomy bag, set a goal to change your ostomy pouch twice a week or every three days. However, if you find it getting full faster than your estimate, make sure you change your pouch before it’s more than two-thirds full. Change it immediately if you notice a leak. You can always increase the amount of time you wear your bag one day at a time until you find the optimal number of days between changes for you.
If you find that your ostomy pouch is prone to leakage, contact your ostomy nurse or other medical professionals who can help you develop strategies to manage your wear time or find a product more suited to you.
Tips to Manage Your Ostomy Pouch Changes
Once you’ve determined a routine for your ostomy pouch changes, make a schedule and stick to it – whether it needs a change or not at that particular point. This will help you avoid putting off changing your pouch and lessen the risk of developing leaks.
Another option is to set an alarm to remind you to change your pouch. If it doesn’t need an immediate change, then set another alarm for a few hours later to check. Keep track of the date and time you changed your pouch by using a marker to write it down on the pouch itself. That way you won’t be left wondering if you changed your pouch last on Tuesday or Wednesday.
Take care of your peristomal skin. Keep an eye out for any visual discolorations or itchiness. Use a mild soap to clean the skin or use products that are made especially for peristomal skin. Get in touch with your nurse if you face any discomfort.
How Often Should You Change Your Ostomy Bag Cover?
As often as you like! Change it according to your mood or change it to match your outfit. Make a statement by turning your ostomy bag into a fashionable accessory with Awesome Ostoschels Ostomy Bag Covers.
Our ostomy bag covers are handmade from comfortable fabrics that don’t irritate the skin. They come in a variety of designs, so you can show off your personal style wherever you go. The odour-reduction fabrics we use increase your confidence as you get back to your normal life.