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Main logo Main logo False /oidc-signin/en-au/ B2B Solutions Convatec Group Contact Us Main logo Brasil Brasil United States (English) United States (English) Argentina Argentina Canada (English) Canada (English) Canada (Français) Canada (Français) Chile Chile Colombia Colombia Ecuador Ecuador México México Perú Perú Belize Belize Guyana Guyana Jamaica Jamaica Venezuela Venezuela Costa Rica Costa Rica Curaçao Curaçao República Dominicana República Dominicana Guatemala Guatemala Honduras Honduras Nicaragua Nicaragua Panamá Panamá Puerto Rico Puerto Rico Suriname Suriname El Salvador El Salvador Estados Unidos (Español) Estados Unidos (Español) United Kingdom United Kingdom France France Deutschland Deutschland Italia Italia Україна Україна België België Česko Česko Danmark Danmark España España Ireland Ireland Nederland Nederland Norge Norge Österreich Österreich Polska Polska Schweiz (Deutsch) Schweiz (Deutsch) Slovensko Slovensko Suisse (Français) Suisse (Français) Portugal Portugal Suomi Suomi Sverige Sverige Türkiye Türkiye Ελλάδα Ελλάδα Россия Россия Bosna i Hercegovina Bosna i Hercegovina България България Eesti Eesti Hrvatska Hrvatska Magyarország Magyarország Ísland Ísland Lietuva Lietuva Latvija Latvija Северна Македонија Северна Македонија Malta Malta România România Srbija Srbija Slovenija Slovenija الإمارات العربية المتحدة الإمارات العربية المتحدة البحرين البحرين مصر مصر ישראל ישראל ایران ایران الأردن الأردن عُمان عُمان قطر قطر پاکستان پاکستان لبنان لبنان الكويت الكويت المملكة العربية السعودية المملكة العربية السعودية Suid-Afrika Suid-Afrika العراق العراق New Zealand New Zealand 日本 日本 Australia Australia India India Malaysia Malaysia Singapore Singapore 대한민국 대한민국 中国 中国 ไทย ไทย Indonesia Indonesia Việt Nam Việt Nam Philippines Philippines Hong Kong SAR China (English) Hong Kong SAR China (English) 中国香港特别行政区 (中文(简体,中国香港特别行政区)) 中国香港特别行政区 (中文(简体,中国香港特别行政区))

Relationships with an Ostomy

It's common to have some anxiety about relationships following ostomy surgery.
Relationships after ostomy surgery a man and woman embracing

Intimacy

While it's normal to feel insecure about how your ostomy changes your body, intimate encounters can be a part of your life and your partner's life. Communication and trust are at the heart of the rehabilitation process. It's comforting to know that intercourse won't hurt the stoma - and neither will you. Share your feelings with your partner and also answer his or her questions. With time and a positive attitude, you can enjoy a mutually satisfying sexual relationship.

Tips to improve your intimacy

  • Trust is the key to peaceful intimacy. The more you talk with your partner about your stoma, how you feel and what you need, the stronger your bond will be.
  • There is a true old saying: The way you see yourself influences the way people see you. Take time after surgery to recognize the changes your body has gone through, analyze your emotions about how you feel after the surgery, and share your feelings with your partner. You will find that your body's acceptance after surgery comes with time.
  • The stoma has no nerve endings; therefore, you will not feel pain or other sensations, but you may bleed a little if you are irritated, that is, rubbed. Trying different positions can help you avoid these types of problems.
  • The side-by-side position almost always works well for people who have a stoma, as the bag will lie on the side and not between you and your partner.
  • Empty the pouch before initiating sexual intercourse. If you prefer, you can use a more discreet bag on this day.
  • If your stoma makes you insecure during intimate moments, cover the pouch with lingerie or a pouch cover. 

For women

  • If you use “the Pill,” you may have to change birth control, especially if you've had an ileostomy. Oral contraceptives are almost always not absorbed with the small intestine smaller. Talk to your doctor or stoma nurse about the best way to prevent pregnancy.
  • After surgery, many women experience vaginal dryness. Try using an intimate lubricant or talk to your doctor about other options for treating vaginal dryness.

For men

  • Some men may experience symptoms of erectile dysfunction or inability to ejaculate shortly after surgery. Don't worry. This can happen frequently.  Dysfunction may be related to surgery or anxiety during intimate caresses. If problems maintaining an erection persist, talk to your doctor who may be able to help.

A guide to intimacy after ostomy surgery

Although it’s normal to feel sensitive about how an ostomy changes your body, fulfilling intimate encounters can still be part of your life.

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Look great and feel confident

Ostomysecrets gives you everything you need to conceal and support your ostomy pouch, without sacrificing your personal style.

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