I attended the UOAA National Conference last week and got some great new information. I’ll be sharing it for weeks.  If you get the chance to go to the next one in 2019 in Philadelphia (they only occur every two years) I recommend you start planning now.

One of the recurring sessions is the Barrier Cooking Show hosted by Hollister. It’s a hands-on lab where you actually get to make a wafer! The chemist that taught the class had a couple of really good wafer tips that I hadn’t thought of:

–Before putting your wafer on, gently heat it first.  He recommended simply placing the wafer under your armpit while prepping your skin. The ingredients in the wafers become much more sticky when warm, and you’ll find adhesion is much improved if you warm it first. He said you could briefly warm it with a hair dryer (not too long!), but don’t ever put it in the microwave.  It will quickly explode!

–The other tip was caution if your bathroom tends to steam up a lot when you take a shower. If you have your supplies ready and waiting, the steam can seriously effect your wafer adhesion. He recommended actually keeping your wafer in another room, or an area where steam won’t compromise it.

I’m now paying attention to both of these and can say I see a definite improvement in immediate adhesion after heating my wafer under my armpit before putting it on. My next post will talk about the amazing Stoma Clinic hosted by the conference.  Experienced WOCNs evaluating your stoma with advice and suggestions for a multiple of appliances.  So much to learn!