FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What is the difference between barrier cream and other types of skin barriers?
Peristomal skin protection can be ensured by using skin barrier creams, sprays, pastes, powders, and wipes. These products differ by more than just the consistency of the skin barrier in the container. For instance, barrier sprays and wipes can be safely used on broken skin, whereas a skin barrier cream should be used mostly on dry and intact skin. Powders absorb moisture and protect raw tissues and seeping skin areas around the stoma, forming a sticky gel that prepares the skin for applying a wafer barrier. Thanks to their thicker consistency, skin barrier pastes can also serve as fillers, providing an optimum seal between the sensitive skin and ostomy pouches of all types.
What does a barrier cream do?
The main role of skin barrier creams is to create a protective layer between the skin around the stoma and one-piece or two-piece ileostomy, urostomy, and colostomy bags. This physical barrier is meant to separate the sensitive peristomal skin and any ingredients in ostomy bag adhesives that may harm it. In addition to that, a barrier cream can also soothe irritated skin and heal sore areas. Diaper Rash Treatment Boudreaux Butt Paste Tube, for instance, has a non-greasy formula that makes it suitable for more than just diaper rash, specifically as an ostomy skin barrier cream, since it does not interfere with tape adhesion. Cavilon Durable Barrier Cream is another product that can be used for ostomy skin care, protecting the skin from accidental leakages, and not just incontinence as it is usually advertised. The same goes for Normlshield Moisture Barrier, which contains dimethicone and aloe vera, to both shield and soothe chapped or cracked skin.
Is Vaseline considered a barrier cream?
Vaseline, or petroleum jelly, is a great moisturizer and soothing ointment base. Although it does create a sealing barrier and many recommend it for treating and preventing diaper rash, it is not suitable as a moisture barrier cream for ostomies. The fact that vaseline is quite greasy prevents proper taping and wafer barrier adhesion, which are essential for sealing ostomy bags into place.
Where do you apply barrier cream?
Apply a small amount of skin barrier cream to the peristomal skin, in a thin layer, and allow it to sink in and dry before proceeding with applying an ostomy pouch or wafer. Make sure you cover the entire area that you want to protect against potential irritations from adhesives.
How often should barrier cream be applied?
You should apply barrier cream every time you peel off your flange or one-piece ostomy appliance. After detaching the pouch from your body, you clean the skin with water and a mild cleanser and then apply the skin barrier cream as you prepare to attach a new flange or pouch. This is usually done twice a week.
Can you use too much barrier cream?
You should stick to using only a small amount, as too much barrier cream won't be properly absorbed and will prevent your ostomy bag from adhering to the skin. Keep in mind that the baseplate of ostomy pouches must be sealed to the skin at all times to prevent skin damage and more frequent ostomy bag replacements.
How do you remove barrier cream from skin?
Any skin barrier cream intended for ostomies is non-greasy and can be washed off with lukewarm water and a washcloth. It is even easier to clean if you are using adhesive remover wipes. Never use alcohol or other harsh substances on such sensitive skin as that found around a stoma. Always be gentle and avoid rubbing, even if you don't feel it harms you. This is because the stoma has no nerve endings.
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