Hot climate and the affects it can have on your ostomy

Hot climate and the affects it can have on your ostomy

I think most people agree with me that summer is the worst season to be in when you have an ostomy. I’m from the northeastern part of the United States and we have hot summers but it has been nothing compared to the summers in the southeast! I’ve lived in Nashville, Tennessee for one summer so far, heading into my second and let me tell you, it was rough. It gets so hot and humid here; it’s almost unbearable. The worst part of my first summer here was that my roommate refused to have the air conditioning on until I told her it was melting my wafers (which it was!). I was told when I first had my ostomy that the wafers need to be at room temperature. They shouldn’t be in the bathroom due to the moisture after a shower. The moisture and heat can affect the wafer and it’s stickiness. That first summer, I had the worst time getting my wafers to stay on. I went from changing my wafer every 4-5 days to every 2-3. It made a huge difference for me and I was constantly checking it during the day to make sure it was still sticking. We, as ostomates just have to understand that we will most likely have to change our wafers more frequently in the summer due to the heat and humidity. Antifungal powder and barrier wipes/spray are a good addition to longer wear and to keep your skin from getting too moist and irritated. I will sometimes use medical tape to help the outer wafer stick longer to my skin. With sweating, the edges will start peeling upwards and I just stick some tape on it to keep it in place.

I can’t say I’ve noticed any difference in the winter. Being from the northeast, I’m used to very cold weather and a lot of snow. The colder weather doesn’t affect my wafer or stoma at all. In fact, my wafer stays on longer in the colder months than the warmer ones. Be mindful that if you travel to warmer climates in the winter for vacation, you will most likely need to change it more often then. I travelled to Turks and Caicos and made sure I brought more supplies with me anticipating the warmer weather and the fact that I knew I would be swimming a lot and that the water would decrease my wear time. I brought more than enough supplies with me. Better to be safe than sorry.

Anonymous