Blow outs with a stoma can be considered as mythical, for some of us they never happen, for others it can be a regular occurrence, for me it tends to be something that is self inflicted and tends to be caused by ignoring that itch or eating something that I know is going to cause my bag to pancake and come off.
Dealing with blow outs
I have been living with stoma 2 and now stoma number 3 after a refashion in 2018 for the last 6 years. I probably suffer with a blow out every couple of months, most are during the night and it really is one of those things. We can’t predict when it's going to happen, however we do get better at managing the carnage a leak can cause in the wee small hours. The last really bad one for me was in August of last year. It was caused by a partial blockage, I had not been feeling myself, the output was watery, I felt sick and I had an early night. I was enjoying a really good sleep. I have developed a really good sixth sense since having my stoma and waking up at 4:30 am and feeling like I knew it was a blinder of all leaks.
Getting up I had to go and wash my hands before touching anything, came back to the bedroom, woken up my husband and went back to the bathroom to shower bag free and then attempt to put on another bag. My husband stripped the bed, changed the bed linen and we both went back to sleep.
In my futile attempts at trying to avoid going the laundrette, I will admit to using my feet to stuff my duvet and mattress protector into the washing machine, used my full body weight to close the washing machine door, pressed start, walked away feeling smug that I had managed to get away with it to then hear the door pop open. My husband did the laundrette run too, bless him and we had a clean duvet and sheets that evening.
It can be upsetting to wake up to a leak, especially if it's a bad one, it can have an affect on our confidence and mental health, the thing you have to realise is that shit happens ( Pun Intended).
They should be a rare occurrence, if they are frequent then you really do need to consult with your stoma nurse as a simple change in appliance or using something like a barrier ring can solve these.
I have had the odd leak whilst walking the dog, this tends to be because I ignore that ever telling itch or have tried my best to wear the bag longer than intended, for the best part I change every 3-4 days but have been known to go longer between changes.
1) If a leak happens it can be either at the worst or best possible moment. I have had the odd leak out and about, but most of mine are confined to when I am sleeping.
2) I always carry an emergency kit, I have one at the office alongside some spare clothes. I also have a kit in the boot of my car.
3) When at home and if it's a night time corker we have a routine. I wake my husband, he strips the bed and changes it, whilst I shower and sort myself out. Everything goes straight into the washing machine and gets put on a 2 hr cycle and then tumble dried.
For the best part mine is normally confined to my pj and the maternity pillow I sleep with to support my bag.