Suppose you need an ostomy, irrespective of whether temporary or permanent, you’ll have to make some lifestyle changes. For diet, you don’t have to change it forever. However, it’s good to know that what you eat or drink directly affects what you expel. Thus, it’s not surprising that an ostomy’s biggest challenge is managing its odor – besides lifestyle changes.
Many worry that their ostomy will affect their social or love life, which can be stressful. But the good thing is that having an ostomy doesn’t mean you will emit odors. Many ostomy deodorants on the market can help you alleviate ostomy odors. But don’t you think knowing how to make your ostomy deodorant at home is better? Stay locked to learn more about ostomy deodorant and how to reduce ostomy odors.
Homemade Ostomy Deodorants
There are a couple of ways to prepare ostomy deodorants at home. They include:
Using Eucalyptus Oil
Though not common, eucalyptus oil is a simple, cheap, yet effective way of eliminating ostomy odors. Using this oil is pretty simple and doesn’t involve further preparations; you use the oil as it is.
To use eucalyptus oil as an ostomy deodorant, add around five or more drops of the oil into the bag after emptying it. There’s a bonus that the oil bottle comes with a drop dispenser on the top, making your work easier.
Eucalyptus oil is very effective at eliminating ostomy odors. Using it ensures your pouch retains a pleasant smell throughout the day. It’s also very economical as you’ll use only a few drops instead of a spray. You can also buy a small bottle of eucalyptus oil that you can carry anywhere, making life easier with an ostomy.
Hydrogen peroxide is cheap, readily available, and an effective ostomy deodorant worth trying. It can help you get rid of ostomy odors. Many ostomy patients who have used hydrogen peroxide say it works and is very effective.
To use hydrogen peroxide, put a tablespoon of hydrogen peroxide with a concentration not greater than 3% in the pouch after emptying. And look forward to no ostomy odors.
There has been some controversy surrounding tic tac use as an ostomy deodorant. Some people say it’s effective and great at eliminating odors, though others say they haven’t found success with it. But it’s worth a try if you struggle with ostomy odors and aren’t interested in buying commercial ones.
Those who use this DIY recommend putting the tic tacs at the bottom of the ostomy bag after emptying it.
Other Tips To Avoid Ostomy Odors
Here are ways to avoid ostomy odors and keep anxiety at bay:
Monitor How You React To Foods/Beverages
The first thing you need to do to prevent ostomy odor is to monitor your body’s reaction to foods/beverages. Different foods/drinks are digested differently, leading to specific byproducts like odor or gas.
Some foods can increase the smell of gas in your ostomy bag. Most of these are rich in soluble fiber or sugars – both natural and artificial. However, everyone’s different, and foods that work for you may not work for another. So, pay attention to how your body reacts to various foods to determine if they affect you or not.
Empty Your Ostomy Pouch Often
Besides monitoring your reaction to your diet, emptying the ostomy pouch regularly is the next best method to reduce ostomy odors. When waste build-up, the smells become stronger. And to control the smell, you’ll need to empty your bag anytime it gets to around 1/3 or ½ full. Letting the pouch become full will make it heavier. This may loosen the seal on your appliance, causing odor and waste to leak.
Use A Filter
Sometimes gas builds up in your ostomy pouch, requiring you to filter it. When gas accumulates, pressure in the ostomy bag increases, inflating it. This can strain the seal and, if not addressed, can result in leakage.
If you have odor issues because of your bag inflating, there are options for inserting an odor-reduction filter. Most ostomy pouches can be attached to a filter directly to the system. This way, you can get rid of the gas.
If your ostomy bag doesn’t have this feature, apply one before wearing it, and it will work the same way.
If you’ve tried ostomy deodorants without success, it may be time to try oral medications that neutralize odors from stool or flatulence. Several drugs can be used to eliminate odors from your stool. For instance, Devon is a chewable medicine containing bismuth subgallate, neutralizing odors from flatulence and stool and eliminating ostomy odors.
Remember to consult your doctor before using any medications when opting for drugs. This way, they can know the side effects and advice accordingly.
Try A New Ostomy Bag
If nothing seems to work even after trying all the above, you may want to talk to your doctor about trying a new ostomy bag.
Ostomy bags come in different sizes and shapes, fitting various people differently. There’s no one-fit-all ostomy bag. And even if your bag is not the problem, there’s the issue of improper fit. An ostomy bag that doesn’t fit properly may leak odor or even waste.
So, ensure you opt for a pouch that fits your stoma and output. And if you’re having issues getting the right fit, talk to a professional about creating a tighter seal. Alternatively, you can try a different pouch type and see if it works.
Living with an ostomy is not easy. There are many issues associated with it that you’ll have to navigate through. Ostomy odors are one of them and can wreak havoc in your social and love life.
When dealing with ostomy odors, you can try simple homemade ostomy deodorants like eucalyptus oil, hydrogen, or tic tacs. If these don’t work, other home remedies like making changes to your diet, emptying the bag often, using a filter, or taking doctor-approved medicines may work. If all fail, try a new ostomy bag.