Although using a catheter may feel like an inconvenience at first, being able to regain your independence is worth the minor hassle that comes with using a catheter and urine collection bag. And if you want to prolong the life of your equipment, while preventing issues like infections then follow the steps below to learn how to properly care for your urine collection bag.
Choosing a Collection Bag
If you’ve only just recently started using a catheter then you may be wondering what type of collection bag would best suit your needs. And the type of collection bag you opt for will come down to your personal preferences and lifestyle. Many people prefer a urine leg bag during the day because they’re inconspicuous and can easily be worn under clothing. Their only negative is they won’t be able to hold as much liquid as a larger bag. Meanwhile, at night you can switch to using a urine drainage bag that will be able to hold larger volumes of urine while you’re sleeping.
First, Collect the Right Supplies
Before you can start caring for your urine collection bag, you’ll need to ensure you have the right supplies for the job. If you’ve never cleaned any of your equipment before then make sure you have:
- Large Drainage Bag
- White Vinegar
- Alcohol Wipes
- Leg Straps
After you’ve gathered the necessary supplies, you’ll want to set aside a bit of time so you won’t feel rushed. Make sure you have enough time to properly attach your new bag, and clean your old bag as well.
Next, Attach Your Catheter To Your New Bag
The first thing you’ll want to do is wash your hands with soap and hot water. You don’t want to transfer any germs from your hands onto the catheter or collection bag where they could cause an infection.
Next, place a towel under the connection where the catheter and the urine collection bag meet. Now, pinch the rubber tube to the catheter to avoid any urine leakage, and remove the catheter from the old bag.
You’ll now need to prepare the tip of your new leg bag by wiping it down with an alcohol wipe. Then, you can insert it into the catheter tube. Once the catheter has been inserted, you’ll want to fasten the straps of the leg bag with tape, but make sure to leave a bit of slack so you don’t cause excess pulling between the catheter and the urethra, which can feel uncomfortable.
Finally, Clean Your Urine Collection Bag
Now, take your old bag and rinse it with a solution that is three parts water and one part vinegar. Let this mixture soak inside the bag for around 20 minutes, then rinse the bag again with soapy water, and hang the bag to dry.
Remember, keeping your catheter and your urine collection bag clean will help you avoid urinary tract infections and prolong the life of your equipment. You’ll be protecting your health and saving money at the same time!