Showering, bag on or bag off

 

Should you shower with your bag on or off?

The answer is that either if fine. I have had a stoma for just over two years and I tried once to shower without my bag and it was a disaster. I hadn’t prepared therefore Tomas misbehaved.

It was such a palaver that I didn’t do it again until the other day. I must admit, I hate showering with my bag on because it feels awful when the bag gets wet against your skin. The adhesive can go a bit gooey until it dries as well and that just feels a bit unsafe.

Bathing without a bag on is on a different level altogether with an ileostomy as I can attest to. In my early days I thought I would try it, my long soak in the bath lasted approximately ten seconds. Having an ileostomy means you have absolutely no control over when and where it will happen. If you are a gambling person then have a go.

To shower, I laid my fresh bag and kit out on the bed and didn’t remove the existing bag until I was almost in the shower. It was a glorious feeling being without that bag, and yes it did the odd poop but it washes away. ( sorry if this isn’t for everyone).

I dried myself as much as possible in the shower cubicle and for the last bit I had some dry wipes handy to wrap over Tomas. I made a quick dash for the bed and all was well.

Being prepared is the key, and it is worth those few extra moments. Don’t worry about shower gel/ shampoo etc running onto your stoma, it will not harm it. Just feel the freedom and enjoy it.