Reply to "Internal JPouch architecture"

We’ve strayed from the original topic, but getting a good night’s sleep is a big deal. This has been posted about frequently, so a search of past posts will yield a wealth of ideas. I’m lucky enough to have been able to work out ways to sleep through the night just about every time.

1) Do you have untreated (or inadequately treated) pouchitis? That’s the most important thing.

2) A bowel slower (Imodium or Lomotil) at bedtime can be very helpful, *especially* if it’s not used during the day. Lomotil works best for me, and 1 tablet seems sufficient.

3) Stop eating a few hours (or more) before bedtime.

4) A very small fatty meal (like a spoonful of peanut butter) at bedtime helps some people a lot.

5) Soluble fiber at dinner time (e.g. psyllium) can thicken things up and for some people reduce leakage and accidents.

6) If you’re using  a sleep aid you might be more likely to miss the signals that your pouch is getting busy.

7) Have you taken the time to “stretch your pouch” (i.e. increase its capacity)? Some of us were advised to do this after surgery, by delaying bathroom visits (during the day) to gradually increase tolerance for a not-quite-full pouch. I still do this years later, though in a less structured way. Unless I’m going out I try not to use the toilet prematurely, and it feels like a useful challenge to pee without pooping when my pouch is half- or three-quarters-full.

8) On the occasions when I do wake up with a sensation of pouch fullness I sometimes choose to go back to sleep anyway. This is tricky to get right, of course, but it seems to help remind my body that my pouch doesn’t always need to be emptied just because I have a sensation.

9) Patiently empty your pouch at bedtime. Anything left in there is an alarm clock set to the wrong time.

Good luck!

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