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Crabernacle
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September 3, 2018 9:57 am  

Hi everyone. I'm new here and have a pretty urgent question.

My mother has Alzheimer's and recently became an ileostomate. While in the hospital and in rehabilitation she keeps picking at or tearing her bag off.

My question is, does anyone know of any products that I could securely put around the bag so she couldn't pick at it or remove it? Or just anything that could help with that? I will be emptying and changing it for her. Thanks in advance.


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VeganOstomy
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September 4, 2018 11:33 am  

Thanks for joining the forums, Crabernacle! 

I'm hoping that someone will have experience with the challenge you're having. I'm sure a lot of innovated ideas will come up from brainstorming. 

 

Just your friendly neighborhood ostomate.

~ Crohn's Disease ¦ Ileostomy ~


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john68
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September 4, 2018 12:19 pm  

Hi Crabernacle, Am just thinking could the ostomy skin be irritated and causing annoyance! when your Mum is home their may be more distractions to keep her away from the bag! using a band or wrap may conceal the bag and make it not as accessible. if you are not sure of the type of item I mean Eric has a item on these. Also a one piece system would mean the bag could not be pulled off and the edges of the wafer on the one piece given extra security by using extra wafer extender. wishing you and your Mum the very best.

ileostomy 31st August 1994 for Crohns


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john68
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September 4, 2018 1:50 pm  

Dementia Stoma Care

Hi I found this.

ileostomy 31st August 1994 for Crohns


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VeganOstomy
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September 4, 2018 1:57 pm  
Posted by: john68

Dementia Stoma Care

Hi I found this.

Great find, John! 

The relevant part:

Many persons with Alzheimer’s or other dementias either pick or rip off their pouches. To prevent this from happening, many caregivers dress their loved ones in special clothing that has no openings in the front but still gives the appearance of normal clothing. One source for this type of clothing is Buck and Buck. Their online catalogue features adaptive clothing by gender and condition.

Just your friendly neighborhood ostomate.

~ Crohn's Disease ¦ Ileostomy ~


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Linda Knelsen
(@dlkfiretruck)
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September 4, 2018 5:17 pm  

 I worked in geriatrics. One thing you could try is to keep her fingernails much shorter then usual. File them rounded, less space in contact with picking at tapes. When changing her bag, talk about the mess it makes with getting at the seal and when changing it., remind her that she would not like the odor or having it on her hands and clothing.  Much like you would a two year old, explaining carefully and gently may help her be more aware of this thing on her tummy. Repetitiveness is not always bad. Tone of voice everything. Tho some do not realize what they are doing, it can be frustrating. Any irritation can happen from mild to intense. Be sure she is not allergic to the seal.  Look for redness when changing the bag.When this was happening to me, I wanted to loose those bags so badly. Do you use a adhesive remover spray to remove her bags. It helps the wafer come off so easily. Not pulling the skin and adding irritation after new one on. Keep in mind, as we age even our skin gets older and more sensitive. You may need to change to a product that does not irritate her and calls attention to it.  I had a problem with the wafer feeling too much like a trash can lid on my tummy. I took care of that issue by putting a "warm" hot water bottle not a hot one, on my tummy  with a wash cloth between my bag and the bottle,on top, laying down 5 M after changing it.isa relaxing time. It also helpsthe tapes to adhere better. It seemed to soften the  wafer a little faster and made it more comfy all around. Of course, now we have those lovely C shaped tapes by coloplast.  It is wider then the plates material, sits on the skin also, and a tad harder to lift the edges,I use them because if I have a leak, it contains it a little longer. They have a wider size one now as well as the one I use and the material is soft to the skin. Flexible. The product is called" Colloplast Elastic Tape Barrier C shaped strips. XL size, ( I have not received mine yet, so not sure of the number...call the company if need be.Being that it is a gradual  thickness, it may be a tad harder for her to get the tape edge up off  her skin, giving you a chance to catch her in the process. In working with those that deal with dementia, sometimes things click with understanding at different times. So, repetitiveness may be important. The skin around the tape on her tummy may also be irritating her. I use a bit of hydrocortisone acetate 1% on the skin around my tapes area. It seems to knock the irritated feel in the butt rather quickly. Mine is a prescription strength. File your moms nail a more rounded shape, it gives her less area to attack the edges. Put some music on that she enjoyed as a young adult and tell her just to listen to it for a while. Dementia patients live in the past sometimes. Good luck and bless you heart for looking after your Mom!


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Linda Knelsen
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September 4, 2018 5:21 pm  

Sorry, one more tip...we also applied velcro dots to places on the clothing that the patient accessed the bags from. Several, made it harder to get at right away, the sound of release made us aware the patient was getting thru the clothing.


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VeganOstomy
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September 10, 2018 11:28 am  

Quick FYI. I just got my copy of the fall 2018 edition of The Pheonix magazine by the UOAA and it features an article about "Dementia and an Ostomy" on page 70-72. 

They offer similar suggestions about layering and making sure that the person's skin is in good condition or else it will naturally be itchy and uncomfortable. 

Just your friendly neighborhood ostomate.

~ Crohn's Disease ¦ Ileostomy ~


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JoyceZ
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October 14, 2018 10:01 pm  

My mom is in her 80's, has Alzheimer's and has had a colostomy since February 2018. She took it off many many times in rehab. We tried leotards with snap closure, foundation garments, high-rise briefs, multiple layers, etc. She was able to get around or through all of them. We found the knee-length onesies with zipper crotch and back zipper from KCK Medical somewhat helpful. She can still manipulate through it though.

Once she transferred to a dementia-only assisted living facility, she had a nurse who was determined to find the right appliance/barrier for her. She had to find one that was easier for the staff to manage and difficult for my mom to remove. My mom also has a recessed stoma. She finally found a new one made by Coloplast that is working well. My mom has gone 3 days twice now, without the appliance being removed. There is only one small blue tab that, if my mom found it, might cause it to be pulled off, but so far it's been good. I have an idea to use a section of dense, thick fabric that would go around her abdomen, covering the appliance, and would velcro shut. It would be put on at night to prevent her from pulling off the appliance in the early morning hours when she's awake and in bed.

Because my mom pulled the bag off so often, she ended up with irritated, itchy skin, which would make her want to pull off the new bag that was just put on -- an endless cycle! Her skin is much better now that the appliance is staying on longer.

So, for my mom, it's a combo of clothing and the right appliance. 

A couple of other ideas that might help:

  • I read about using Montgomery straps to cover the appliance.
  • Try the one-piece pajamas that zipper up the front and have long sleeves and long legs - maybe put it on backwards

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VeganOstomy
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October 15, 2018 2:44 pm  

Wonderful insights, JoyceZ! Thank you so much for sharing!

Just your friendly neighborhood ostomate.

~ Crohn's Disease ¦ Ileostomy ~


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