Are you an ostomy patient and curious to know which types of colostomy bags are best suited for you? If so read on!
Let’s face it – some choices are harder to make than others. If you’re living with an ostomy bag, you might be wondering if your bag is the most suitable option for you and your lifestyle, or if there are better choices out there.
As with all things in life, there are pros and cons. Each type of bag has its advantages and disadvantages, and sometimes you have to weigh each other to find the perfect bag.
You may prefer to wear bags that you can change and dispose of immediately rather than a stoma bag that you have to keep emptying at intervals. This decision is always a personal one and entirely up to you.
“While some of us are lucky enough to find the perfect bag right off the bat, most of us will have to go through quite a few bag systems before we find the right fit,” says Natalie Mascal, founder of Vera SA Ostomy Underwear.
“When I first had my stoma I saw a stomathereapist in the hospital and she was able to assist me in the correct system to use. I have since changed the brand to suite my lifestyle. The system that I currently use is a two piece from Hollister. I found that this works best for me however in saying this there are sometimes where I sit and curse at the bag and there are other times where I am not aware that it is there. I go and see my stomathereapist on occasion and she will advise me on new products that are on the market and what will suite me best.”
11 Advantages of Disposable Ostomy Bags
- They’re great if you’ve got to attend a party or a special occasion. You don’t need to worry about having to empty an event place, a restaurant, or your friend’s house in the toilet.
- Snugly fits into a woman’s wallet or a man’s inner jacket pocket. Remember, every time you go out to a party or a restaurant, you must always have a few spare ones.
- Emptying a drainable bag emits an unbearable smell, but with disposable colostomy bags, once you take it off and replace it with a new one, the smell doesn’t last for more than a few minutes.
- If you wake up in the middle of the night, feel sleepy or groggy, you don’t need to fiddle with emptying your bag. Just take off the one you’ve been using and pop on the other in a few minutes.
- If you want an uninterrupted night’s sleep, large bags work best.
- If you’re traveling by road with your family in a family car, you can make a quick change if you need to. Yes, the other occupants will have to bear a little smell, but then they will understand. All they need to do is wind down the windows for a couple of minutes.
- The same applies when traveling by air. Removal and disposal is quick and easy once you’ve mastered the change of your bag. Big bags are the best if you have to travel for a long time.
- Disposable bags are best used for babies and very young children.
- Closed ostomy bags are very convenient when you need to change your bag in a public toilet or at a friend’s house.
- There is no chance of leaks or odours emanating from the closed ostomy pouch because it is completely sealed.
- They are waterproof and leak-proof and will not absorb or allow moisture outside, which means that you can bathe, shower or even swim with one.
5 DISADVANTAGES OF DISPOSABLE Ostomy BAGS
- They are more expensive than reusable colostomy bags because they are for one-time use. This means that you’re going to go through more bags and spend more money on them every week.
- While a drainable pouch can be reused for a few days before it has to be thrown away, you may need to use as many as 4 or 5 bags per day, sometimes more depending on your diet. If you’re a hearty eater, you’ll have to change your bags quite often during the day.
- You’ll need to change the bag when it’s only half full, unlike the drainable types you don’t need to empty until it’s three-quarters full.
- They tend to fill up quickly with flatulence and it is almost impossible to quickly expel the gas as you can with drainable ostomy bags.
- Closed bags are best used by people who have less waste disposal. This makes it difficult to use for ileostomy or urostomy because their output is almost constant and more fluid.
AND THAT’S A WRAP UP
At the end of the day, it all boils down to your personal preferences and your lifestyle, and whether the positive aspects of a closed ostomy pouch outweigh the negative for you.