An ileostomy is created out of the ileum (small intestine)1 and requires some particular but simple attention to keep you comfortable and healthy.
Because the ileum contains digestive enzymes and acids that may cause skin irritation, extra care is needed with an ileostomy to keep waste materials from coming into contact with the skin on your abdomen.2
Drink plenty of water and fluids—at least six to eight cups (48 to 64 ounces) per day. Having an ileostomy may make you more prone to dehydration, which could lead to the loss of important minerals your body needs.3
1 What is an ostomy? page. United Ostomy Associations of America Web site. http://www.uoaa.org. Accessed December 10, 2015.
2 McGarity WC. Gastrointestinal surgical procedures. In: Hampton BG, Bryant RA, eds. Ostomies and Continent Diversions: Nursing Management. St Louis, MO: Mosby-Year Book; 1992:349-371.
3 Inflammatory Bowel Disease Group Foods page. Mount Sinai Hospital Web site. http://www.mountsinai.on.ca. Accessed November 15, 2007.