Returning To Work After A Proctocolectomy & Ileostomy? Here Are Some Helpful Tips!

If suffering from ulcerative colitis has caused you to miss too much work, it may be time to consider having surgery. Of course, this is something you'll need to discuss with your doctors, but surgery may allow you to improve your quality of life and allow you to work normal hours, even with an ileostomy bag. After healing from ostomy surgery, you may be hesitant about returning to work. Don't be.

A proctocolectomy and ileostomy will mean you will no longer have bouts of frequent diarrhea and belly aches that cause you to lose time at work, and ostomy bags are easy to care while at work. It just takes a bit of preparation. Here are a few ways to prepare yourself to return to work after a proctocolectomy and ileostomy. 

Purchase an extra set of ostomy supplies

Purchase an extra set of ostomy supplies to keep at your workplace. Keep the products in a discreet portable bag to take with you to the restroom. The additional benefit of doing this is that you wouldn't worry if you have gathered everything you need for your ostomy bag  every time you prepare to leave for work.

By already having a set of supplies at your workplace, you won't run the risk of not having what you need. Just be sure to replace any supplies as necessary. Ask your employer if you are able to ship ostomy products to your workplace and consider setting up an automatic shipment of them, such as on a weekly or monthly basis.

Using the restroom to take care of your ostomy needs 

When it's time to change your ostomy bag or eliminate the waste in it, doing so in a public restroom may not seem ideal, but it may actually be easier to deal with than the problems you experienced prior to surgery. With an ostomy, you'll have the advantage of choosing when to use the restroom to either change your bag or eliminate the waste in it, depending on the type of bag you have.

However, don't wait to take care of the matter until the bag is very full. It only takes a few minutes to take care of the ostomy bag so there's no reason to wait until the last possible minute. Waiting too long could easily put you at the risk of an explosive issue that may be time consuming and embarrassing to clean up.