Life After an Ostomy
If an ostomy is temporary, the opening will be closed after the affected structures have healed. Voluntary control of bowel movements is lost with either a colostomy or ileostomy. With a urostomy, urination processes will not be controllable. All types of an ostomy involve the use of a bag or pouch that's attached to the abdomen. After the procedure is performed, patients are usually given instructions on how to care for their stoma, how to empty the bag, and how to avoid skin irritations and other issues that may affect the skin around the artificial opening. There are also different pouching systems available to fit different lifestyles.
Having an ostomy doesn't mean you'll be limited in your activities, or even with what you wear – there are specially designed ostomy clothes and swimwear, although it's also possible to wear normal clothing that's comfortable. If you'll be going on a trip, bring along some extra ostomy supplies and you should be fine. If you are self-conscious about your bag, there are ways you can minimize its appearance, such as emptying the bag when it's a third of the way full, or using a pouching system that's designed to be less noticeable.