Learn with Comfizz
Looking for ostomy education & related topics, helpful hints & real life experiences? Look no further! Browse our blog for support!
Sleep is one of the top things a new ostomate worries about and can struggle to get into a new routine with following surgery. For sometimes decades, they may be used to sleeping a certain way bag free. To then have to find a new normal with your ostomy bag going nowhere soon is mentally and physically hard. If you have had a rough road with your illness and surgery, bedtime is where you want to try and relax and unwind which can be difficult as you get used to having a bag in the way. It won’t always feel that way, I promise. You will find a new way of sleeping that allows you to not worry about bag...
How do you give your ostomy & medical supplies a spring clean?
Cleanliness is next to godliness they say. When it comes to organising medical supplies you can’t let things go and not be organised or all hell breaks loose! You can end up running out and misplace things when you need them the most, when all could be avoided with little and regular steps to live by.
GALENTINES: How have the women in your life helped you with your ostomy?
Never mind waiting for a man to buy you flowers (thank you Miley for the reminder!) Galentine’s Day is an excuse to show love and gratitude to those in your life that have helped you through the hard times and celebrated you through the good. I am extremely blessed to have wonderful friends and family around me, and I count myself very lucky in the past year through one of the most difficult yet that I have had that support network around me and my little man.
Can you share your tips for getting used to ostomy life?
This for me is most important. Connecting with other ostomates is what got me through the first few months of ostomy life. I already had a son who’s ostomy I had been managing for 5 years. Despite this, I found having one myself completely different. When I woke from surgery I was almost repulsed by my stoma. That may sound extreme and believe me when I say I am not averse to stomas, they save lives and I asked for stoma surgery. Yet my initial reaction was to be horrified.
What self care tips will help you to beat the January blues?
How are you feeling this January? It’s easy to expect everyone to feel a sense of renewed possibilities, with the motivation to be healthier and hopeful. All we are met with is adverts for gym memberships, self care products and sales galore. Some may be feeling depressed, anxious, or just not their best, and that's ok. We all have difficulties in our lives whether it be financial, an illness, or relationship troubles to name but a few.
What have you learnt about your ostomy in the last year?
You may worry about how life will change following surgery. For me I was in chronic pain, living off a ridiculous amount of painkillers, and trying to make it through each day wishing the surgery would come yesterday. I was hoping to be able to reduce the pain killers and be able to walk without being in pain.
What Christmas outfits can you wear?
Christmas feels that much more special this year. Can you feel it? After a few years of the pandemic having to hold back on what Christmas is about - being together. As I type this I am looking at my beautiful Christmas tree and it is not quite December 1st yet…don’t judge! A lot of us are doing the same as people share on social media their excitement about getting the festive season started earlier this year, and why not?! Why not bring joy into your life when times are hard. I say do you, get the decorations up if you want, and start the festivities when you want to.
Dealing with winter colds with an ostomy
Winter brings about many changes, some welcome, some not so much. I love nothing more than lighting every candle in the house, my twinkly tree on, the dark nights and watching GoggleBox on the telly under a throw with the family. But what does it mean for us ostomates? As we all know, we are all so different in the reason why we got a ticket to the club, and what impact that has on our wider health. For some the arrival of Winter may not change that much, for others it can present the need to adapt and tweak a few different things.
What would you have written to your child before their ostomy surgery?
My beautiful boy, you have a long road ahead. You were born with the strength of a warrior and the fight to overcome more than most do in their whole lives within the first few years of life. You need stoma surgery like Mummy did when she was born. The word stoma is the opening made in the tummy to divert stool out of the intestine. It is like a rose bud sitting proudly on top of your skin. It moves sometimes like a wriggly worm and can be a bit naughty and poop when you don’t want it too.
What is in your 'on the go' ostomy kit?
You are sore and perhaps bloated from surgery, not feeling quite like yourself. You may be relying on medication, and testing your food tolerances with your new accessory to see what you can and can’t tolerate. With all this in mind, what seemed as simple as going out to catch up with a friend over coffee can bring up many questions: What toilet facilities are there? Do I need a radar key if I need disabled toilet facilities? Will I need to empty my bag there? (You may not have done this in public yet) What happens if my bag leaks and needs changing? Can I have caffeine?