Living with an ostomy bag can sometimes present challenges. How to keep an ostomy bag from ballooning is one of the most common questions among ostomates.
In this blog post, we will explain what causes ostomy bag ballooning, share tips on how to reduce it, and offer advice on how to prevent it from happening. We hope to provide you with practical solutions and some home delivery ostomy supplies that may help keep your ostomy bag secure and comfortable.
Understanding Ostomy Bag Ballooning
How to keep an ostomy bag from ballooning is a common concern for people living with an ostomy. When your ostomy bag fills up with gas, it expands, resembling a balloon. This is known as ballooning, and it can compromise discreetness, cause leaks, odors, and discomfort, and become noticeable under clothing.
The leading cause of ballooning is the natural gas production by your digestive system. When you have an ostomy, the usual route for escaping gas, such as through the rectum, is no longer available. Instead, the gas gets redirected into the ostomy bag, leading to inflation.
Some foods and drinks can also contribute to ostomy bag ballooning. Carbonated beverages, high-fiber foods, and vegetables like cabbage and beans cause gas. Eating or drinking quickly can cause you to swallow air, increasing the gas in your digestive system and worsening the issue.
It is expected to experience ostomy bag ballooning. However, it can be a nuisance and affect your daily activities. Fortunately, there are approaches you can take to help manage this issue and keep your ostomy bag from ballooning.
Tips for How to Keep an Ostomy Bag from Ballooning
Here are some tips we have come up with to prevent an ostomy bag from ballooning so you can maintain comfort and security:
Selecting the Right Ostomy Bag
Choosing the right ostomy bag is crucial in preventing ballooning. There are several features to look for when selecting an ostomy bag that can help prevent ballooning. Try to look for bags that have built-in air filters or vents. These features allow gas to escape from the bag, reducing the risk of ballooning. Also, consider the size and shape of the bag. A bag that fits snugly against your body will help prevent leaks, minimize air accumulation, and avoid ballooning.
Proper Skin Preparation Before Application
Clean and dry the peristomal skin before applying the ostomy pouching system. Use a skin barrier or adhesive to create a secure seal. When applying the ostomy bag, ensure it is secure and adheres well to your skin. This will help maintain a tight seal and prevent air from entering the bag. A barrier cream, powder, or spray can also protect the skin and promote healing.
Consider Ostomy Accessories
Additional ostomy accessories can further help prevent ballooning. You may consider using a convex skin barrier if you have curves or bulges. These ostomy products can help distribute pressure evenly around the stoma, increasing comfort, preventing leaks, and ensuring a more reliable seal. The better the seal, the less likely air can get into the ostomy bag and cause ballooning. You might also consider an ostomy belt for extra support, deodorizing drops, or ostomy deodorants, which can help reduce gas production and minimize odors.
Maintain a Good Diet
Some foods and beverages can increase gas production, leading to ballooning. Avoiding gas-producing foods like beans, lentils, cabbage, onions, and carbonated drinks can help. Opt for easily digestible foods like yogurt, rice, and lean proteins.
Maintain Physical Activity
Adopting ways to keep an ostomy bag from ballooning, including a regular exercise routine, can help improve gas evacuation and reduce the risk of ballooning. Activities focusing on your abdominal muscles, such as walking, swimming, or gentle yoga poses, can help stimulate bowel movement and release trapped gas.
By adopting these tips, choosing the right ostomy bag, ensuring proper application and fit, and using additional ostomy accessories, you can reduce the chances of your ostomy bag ballooning. The goal is to maintain a comfortable lifestyle while wearing an ostomy bag. Always consult your healthcare professional for personalized advice, recommendations, and guidance.
If you are concerned with how to keep an ostomy bag from ballooning, we hope you found this blog post helpful. Our Ostomy Product Experts are just a phone call away for any questions about the ostomy products and supplies we offer.
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Disclaimer: Important Notice Regarding Medical Advice
The information provided in this blog is intended for general informational purposes only and should not be considered a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.