Summer Holidays The Ostomate Way
It’s the time of year where everyone is booking their summer holidays and starting the count down for when you are on that plane and leaving the tarmac to sunnier climates. Going on holiday with an ostomy shouldn’t be daunting but it does involve a little bit of preparation.
Will flying affect my ostomy?
Flying with an ostomy is no different to those flying with all their plumbing still intact. Your bag will not explode or implode.
If you are taking your supplies via your hand luggage without written letter of proof from your GP or stoma nurse then are a few allowances the security checks will make. Those are as follows:
- All liquids must be under 100ml and limited to one small plastic bag
- Scissors are allowed but the blade has to be under 6cm in length
Now I have never had an issues getting my stoma kit through security but I have still heard a few horror stories via the grapevine for those who have not had such a pleasant experience. I typically flash security my stoma bag and tell them prior to going through the pat down and body scanner.
I also always empty my bag prior to going through the gates to make life easier.
For those who want to have the added security of not having to answer questions you can get a letter from your GP advising about your stoma & supplies. You can also get a travel certificate from your delivery companies explaining about your stoma.
While it’s not a legal requirement to have travel insurance for pre-existing conditions and disabilities in place, if you needed to cancel your trip due to your medical condition without insurance, you could be liable for loss of deposit or cancellation costs. Having specialist travel insurance means you will be protected for irrecoverable costs that you incur.
Now travel insurance is a must for going away. Most bank accounts will cover you but proceed with caution. After much research and getting quotes for myself as looking at travelling in October of this year my eyes were watering over the difference in the costing for my quotes. I was quoted anything from £78 – £500 for the week. Now part of this is due to having surgery and not passing the year all clear from the surgery date.
Best advice is be as open and honest as possible with your medical needs when going through the quoting system.
I would advise that you use the comparison sites for this as you can get more information rather than just using a google search for medical travel insurance
Using these you will get a fairer quote and can see the excess charges and can make an informed decision as to which you wish to purchase.
My Own Experience Traveling Abroad
Lessons learned about sun cream
I lost a stoma bag whilst sleeping and had a rather messy clean up. When applying sun cream please avoid going near your baseplate and make sure you wash your abdomen and get off the excess residue as the moisturising properties of sun cream makes it difficult to apply a clean bag and have it stay attached.
I have never had an issue with my bag staying stuck. I use base plate extenders to help as spend a fair amount of time swimming and I change my bag daily.
What happens if I lose my supplies?
Respond Healthcare delivery service. If you are with them then you may not be aware that they have a service where they can get supplies out to you whilst abroad if you lose supplies. For further information then please contact them.
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.