Barrier Rings: Is Simplicity Key?
Are Barrier rings an accessory or for most of us a lifesaver that increases bag wear time and helps to prevent the odd mishap of a leak?
Having played about with a few barrier rings and testing out a few, for me the Eakin slim works the best and is part of my stoma bag change routine.
Is there a science behind barrier rings? Do you find applying them requires a PHD in how to mould them? Shape them? Or just trying to get the blighters to stick.
It is very confusing when you see the marketing for each barrier ring. This contains so many ingredients, this has a PH balance, this is by far the best product on the market for you to use.
Why simplicity is best
I sometimes think that simplicity is key both in products and in stoma life.
Having tried many of the freely available seals on the market and using them I found that for me trying to mould the seal and to give me a secure seal around the stoma left me with a sore as I couldn’t mould the thing and my stoma being a relatively tiny 17 mm with the majority of companies starting at a hole of 20mm that they didn’t cater for my sizing. I found that my rip and wrap method compromised the seal and for me it just wasn’t helping with my leaks and decreased bag wear time for me.
I came across the Eakin slims courtesy of a fellow ostomate who handed me several boxes at a Purple Wings catwalk event.
For me they changed my life, they can be ripped and wrapped around my stoma, it gives me a full seal around the ileostomy and helped to increase my bag wear time from 1 day to 3-4 with a one-piece bag and 7 days with a two-piece baseplate.
I have been using them now for the last 2 years and I have gone from using 30 bags a month down to 8, my skin around my stoma site is perfectly healthy and I no longer have the little red ring that is a sign that stoma output is making contact with the skin and it no longer bleeds.
Reasons as to why people use barrier rings
- Treat sore skin
- Increase security and confidence
- Extend pouch wear time
- Prevent leakage
- Prevent skin problems
Research into what barrier ring is most effective
Each blog post I write up requires a large amount of research and will always have the disclaimer that this is based on personal experience and that should you be experiencing clinical issues then please see your stoma nurse.
I also try and test out what is best for myself. Out of the 7 I put through their paces, Eakin was the best that suited my needs.
The main aim of a barrier ring is to provide absorption of perspiration and secretions meaning they can increase the bag wear time of the pouch by maintaining adhesion and a healthy skin balance against fungal and bacterial attack.
In effect, a barrier ring wicks moisture away from the stoma site.
Do you use barrier rings? What have you found is the best for you?
Would love to hear your feedback
Many thanks for reading
This blog post is intended to give advice to ostomates. The information given is based on Louise’s personal experience and should not be taken as clinical advice. Each ostomates needs are unique to them and their stoma care routine. Please consult with your Stoma Care Nurse before undertaking any changes to your stoma care routine or if you are experiencing any health issues.