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Having a colostomy

How to take care of your colostomy

If you have undergone a colostomy surgery, you will need to use a stoma bag. Your stoma therapist will explain you how to cope with your stoma and your new condition. In time, you may be able to use and change your bag on your own, allowing you to be independent. 

Having wind with a stoma

A common concern of people living with a stoma is having wind.[1] You might fear the reaction of others. But please do not worry as most colostomy and ileostomy bags have a filter that allows gases to escape automatically, without any odor. Such a filter is usually effective for at least 12 hours in total. However, it may become saturated or moistened by liquids. The bag then remains inflated by the gas. This occurs most often after 12 to 24 hours of wearing the bag or at the end of the night. Never make a hole in your stoma bag as this will certainly cause odors to escape.

Protect the filter

Remember that it is important to close your filter during water immersion (showering, bathing, water sports...), by applying an adhesive patch on the filter. These patches are supplied in the stoma bags’ boxes. Remember also to remove the patch at the end of the immersion for the filter to start functioning again automatically. 

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There is more specific information for you on our dedicated webpages.

Visit our section for healthcare professionals

[1] Erwin-Toth P, Thompson SJ, Davis JS. Factors impacting the quality of life of people with an ostomy in North America: results from the Dialogue Study. J Wound Ostomy Continence Nurs. 2012 Jul-Aug;39(4):417-22; quiz 423-4. doi: 10.1097/WON.0b013e318259c441. PMID: 22652937.