Way way back, just after I had my stoma surgery, I did a little post on showering with a stoma. I shared some tips which I’d picked up as a newbie however two and a half years later, I’ve learnt so much more which I want to share. My showers have gone from 1 hour + down to a regular 15 minutes.
Never in a million years did I think I’d be able to shower in the same length of time as I used to. I’m not going to lie, it still can be a hassle but there are some ways to speed it up.
I’m going to share with you some tips and tricks which I’ve picked up over the past two years to help you along the way.
3 ways to make showering with a stoma easier
- Shower with the bags on
I know this can be a ‘controversial’ area but it is so much easier by keeping your bags on. I remember reading so many things saying it’s better to shower with them off but it’s just not practical. Anyone with an ileostomy knows that you have no control over when your bags active. Some people say shower before you eat then it won’t be as active but you can never be 100% sure plus sometimes that won’t fit in with your routine or day. Instead, I shower with my bags on and then once I’m out of the shower I do a fresh bag change.
- Prep all of your stoma stuff before you get in the shower
By this, I mean have your bags cut and all of your stuff out and ready to go. That way, when you get out of the shower you can quickly and efficiently change them. I never keep the bag I’ve showered in on purely because I can’t be dealing with waiting for it to dry plus it’s always nice to feel totally clean when you’ve had a shower.
- Don’t be afraid of the water on your stoma
I remember being absolutely terrified when I first showered with my stoma. It took forever, I was scared of the water hurting my stoma and how to dry myself. Now, it feels like second nature. Having a stoma is a strange thing, it feels so unnatural at first but it’s crazy how quickly you get used to it! The water won’t hurt your stoma at all. If you are showering with your bag off, try not to get soap on the actual stoma but it won’t harm it if you do!
So there are some of my tips for showering with a stoma. I know it feels strange at first but it will eventually feel ‘normal’. Obviously, it would be great to not have to deal with your bags straight afterwards however it is possible to do it all quickly and efficiently so you can get on with your day!
Don’t forget to leave your tips in the comments below on how you shower with a stoma!