You can bathe or shower without an appliance if you wish. A good soak in the bath will give the skin around the stoma a chance to rest. However, be aware that your stoma might function while you are bathing or showering, especially if you are an ileostomist.
If you bathe with a stoma pouch, do not try to remove it immediately afterwards as the adhesive is stronger when wet and becomes harder to remove.
When bathing, do not use bubble bath or bath oils as they may stop the stoma pouch sticking securely afterwards and can irritate your stoma. If using a power shower, be aware of the water jets as these can be very powerful and can cause problems if directed on to your stoma, especially at close range.
As someone living with a stoma, you are entitled to use disabled toilet facilities. They have more space and surfaces on which to lay out your products, which you may find useful.
Some disabled toilets require a RADAR key, which you can obtain either through the RADAR website, your nurse or Fittleworth.
Top tips for using public toilets
- Put a couple of sheets of toilet paper in the bowl before emptying your stoma pouch to reduce noise and splashing.
- Flush the toilet immediately after emptying your stoma pouch, to help reduce odour.
- Always have paper or wipes with you for use in public toilets as they often run out. A bottle of water can also be handy when you need to clean up.
- Use only plain, lukewarm water and dry wipes for cleaning your stoma (if you must use wet wipes, then make sure they are free from lanolin and fragrance as the skin around your stoma can be very sensitive).