Our digestive systems produce gas as a byproduct of eating and digesting food. This can be a bit of a problem for those with an ileostomy or ostomy. Ostomates can choose from either a one-piece or two-piece pouching system depending on their lifestyle and personal preference. Both of these types of systems can incorporate a charcoal filter to allow this gas/wind to be released.
As we produce gas during digestion, we need to pass this gas/wind. For ostomates this is typically through their pouching system filters. When these filters get wet or blocked by stoma output there can be a backup of gas/wind. As you can imagine this can lead to ballooning in the ostomy pouch. How do you keep your ostomy bag from ballooning? Learning what causes ballooning can go a long way in how to deal with this issue as well as help you maintain your confidence. Pouching systems that incorporate charcoal filters can still experience ballooning if excessive amounts of gas are produced. Unfortunately, this is a frequent problem that ostomates need to manage, cope with, and accept.
Excessive gas building up gradually in your pouching system can make it seem like you’re wearing a balloon under your clothing. This excessive gas buildup can because by:
Our diet can be the biggest culprit in producing excessive gas passing into an ostomate’s pouching system. We should try to avoid certain foods that can lead to producing more gas/wind. Some of these gas producing foods include:
With ballooning a frequent problem, what’s the best way to keep an ostomy bag from ballooning and causing a blowout? Dealing with ballooning in your ostomy apparatus system can be a multifaceted approach to ensure proper results. Some steps you can take are:
Yes, gas buildup or ballooning is a common occurrence that ostomates need to accept and manage. If you have difficulty managing this condition at home, be sure to consult your doctor or ostomy nurse for assistance. Visit HPFY and view our extensive ostomy supply inventory to help prevent ballooning.
Living with an ostomy can be a delicate balance of maintaining a lifestyle and doing what’s right for your sensitive peristomal skin. While most treatments can be handled at home when you experience issues with your ostomy, there are times you should seek medical attention. These include:
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Kevin Cleary has been a Health Products For You contributor for many years and has a degree in marketing. His health and wellness journey has a very personal meaning and has guided him in his content writing for HPFY.
In 2006, ...
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