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What is a Seltbelt Protector?
As the name might imply, a steal belt protector (also called a seatbelt cover) is an accessory that’s used to protect your stoma from impacts caused by a seatbelt.
This kind of product may not be needed by all ostomates, but if your seatbelt comes directly over your stoma, then it may be worth checking out.
- Seatbelt covers can protect your stoma while in a vehicle without the need to wear a stoma guard.
- They are easy to use.
- Tend to be comfortable to use, even on extended drives.
- Can be used in cars, trucks, planes, go-karts, and anywhere you’d expect to wear a seatbelt.
- Designed to last years.
- Won’t interfere with most other accessories.
- Some can be used when your appliance is both in the vertical or horizontal position.
- Not that expensive.
- Can be inconvenient if used in a shared vehicle.
- Can be bulky if used with a heavy jacket.
- Easy to forget at home.
How Seatbelt Protectors are Typically Sold
Some seatbelt protectors are sold explicitly as that, while others are sold as stoma guards which need to be worn on your abdomen.
They often come in a one-size-fits-all variety, and some (like the Ostomy Protector) are adjustable in a way that allows you to spread out the foam blocks for a better fit.
When looking for one, it’s important to check that they are easy to use, especially if you plan on removing it every time you exit your vehicle.
It’s also worth checking out how large the cover is since some can be quite bulky. I’ve been using the product by Weir Comfees called the Comfee Drive for many years now and I find it to be a great balance between comfort, protection, and size.
Seatbelt Protectors are usually sold in the $20-$30 range and are often not covered by insurance. Because they last many years, this is a small investment for long-term comfort and peace of mind.
Unfortunately, it’s not as easy to find these compared to other accessories, but you can locate manufacturers on THIS page or check with your current supplier to see what they can offer.
How to Use Seatbelt Protectors
Traditional seatbelt protectors will attach to your belt where it comes across your lap. This style will use Velcro to secure the belt, although the placement of the Velcro will vary from product to product.
It’s important to note that the foam blocks should be on the inside of the seatbelt to give enough height for your stoma. I’ve installed these the wrong way and while it may look right, they don’t offer any protection if the foam blocks are on the outside of the seatbelt.
Tips for Using Seatbelt Protectors
Seatbelt protectors are such a simple and straightforward product to use, but there are a few tips to make things even more convenient.
- Consider getting more than one if you use several vehicles at home or work.
- If you share a vehicle with someone else, consider removing larger seatbelt protectors or find one that’s small enough to leave on without being too annoying for the other person.
- In the winter, consider not using a seatbelt cover if it’s causing problems with your jacket (too much bulk is a bad thing!).
Alternatives to Seatbelt Protectors
There are a few ways to protect your stoma from your seatbelt.
If you’re already wearing a stoma guard, then chances are it’ll keep your stoma protected from your seatbelt already.
Likewise, if you wear your ostomy appliance sideways, then it may avoid being smooshed by the seatbelt already!
My reviews for seatbelt protectors will be included under the stoma guard section of my reviews, which can be found HERE.