Living With A Catheter? Here Are Some Tips To Make Your Life Easier and More Comfortable

The goal is to use the type most fitting to you. There are several options you should know.  

You could choose between using the short-term catheters, indwelling catheters, or external catheters.

The intermittent catheters are also referred to as short-term catheters and are mostly used just a few times during the day when you want to empty the bladder. You would afterward dispose of the catheter and replace it with a new one. The essence of this is to minimize the risk of urinary tract infections (UTIs). No one wants a chronic kidney infection (pyelonephritis) or permanent kidney damage which results from UTIs. 

Intermittent catheters are preferable for a person who is highly sensitive and who won’t want prolonged use. However, anyone going for this option would have to prepare for self-catheterization.

The option of using the indwelling Foley catheters is preferable in a case you won’t be needing or loving the regular removal and refixing as is peculiar to the intermittent catheters. These catheters would stay in your body for longer time periods. They’ll have to be inserted by your personal doctor and are usually attached to a drainage bag. They are equipped with small balloons attached to their ends that lessens out once it needs to be taken out. With the Foley catheters, you can still go about normal life activities with less worry. You won’t be needing to self-catheterize.

The external Catheters are also called condom catheters and are only available for persons with the male anatomy. They are congenital catheters with a condom-like structure that wraps around the penis to take out urine into a collection bag. It is commonplace to attach the urine bags to the inner thigh using velcro leg straps. External catheters also don’t require a rather painful self-catheterization. You should also change them at least once a day.

However, depending on your condition, your doctor may be in the best position to recommend which one of the three would do.

No matter the type you choose, here are a few tips to keep in mind when using catheters to make your living much easier and less painful:

Wash Hands Before Touching Any Catheter Equipment And Remain Hydrated Daylong

There will be instances when you must touch the catheter equipment during the day. The professionals behind Vante / PlasticWeld point out that whether you’re doing this because you feel like it or you’re trying to empty the urine bag or insert another disposable catheter, you must wash your hands thoroughly before touching the equipment. The safe thing is to inhibit the growth of any type of infection by performing this act.

Besides, you should stay as hydrated as possible. Don’t think drinking more water would do more harm seeing that you want to reduce the amount of urine and better manage the catheter. In fact, drinking more water is essential for keeping the catheter line free of residue. When this is the case, the risk of an irritation or an infection is greatly reduced. Get your water bottle by the side, and let your body and everyone know that this is your new beer.

Make Sure To Have The Insertion Area Cleaned Out Twice Daily

Rashes and other skin issues like folliculitis, atopic dermatitis, dyshidrotic eczema, etc could develop near the insertion site. You don’t want this unpleasant phenomenon; so, you must completely prevent their occurrence by washing the skin in that area more than once a day using non-reactive soap and other cleaning products to protect the skin and keep that area clean always. 

The washing will also prevent the skin from drying and leaving those urine remnants that could lead to rashes and itching. The risk of inflammation near the insertion place will also significantly reduce. Cleaning is very important and will also reduce the discomfort experienced when using the catheter. 

There are a lot of things you should do to have healthy and safe use of the catheter. While some have already been mentioned here, another thing you shouldn’t also forget to do is making sure that the catheter line between the point of insertion and the urine bag is free of tangles and bends. The reason is that nothing must hinder the urine flow. If you’re using an external catheter, you will need to adjust the straps on the bags from time to time for ease of movement and better comfort. Doing so will help you live with this medical equipment in a manner that’s convenient and adaptable for your everyday life.

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