Chemotherapy is not a drug, but the name for the delivery method used when treating cancer. No matter what condition your health is in, Chemotherapy can be tough. The medicines that are used are strong and many will attack all of the cells of your body not just the ones with cancer. Normal cells will bounce back, making most side effects temporary. Hair loss is one of the most common temporary side effects.
In the grand scheme of things, we think that loosing your hair is a minor thing, but to the person who has lost their hair it can be devastating. Hair loss is something everyone can see, so the person has lost his or her hair feels as if everyone is looking and talking. People are usually very sympathetic, but the chemotherapy patient is not looking for sympathy. They want hair.
One factor for a successful treatment is the importance of maintaining a good attitude. A good attitude can be preserved through good preparation. Because you know beforehand that you will experience hair loss and that it will be temporary, it will help to plan ahead. This will help decrease anxiety and depression, two factors that hinder a quick and healthy recovery.
You can loose all body hair, but certainly, the most noticeable loss is the hair on your head. The state of your health prior to treatment will have no bearing on the rate at which you loose your hair. Most people experience their hair falling out in clumps around the 2nd or 3rd week of treatment.
Often a person will feel as thought they have lost control of their body when this begins to happen, causing anxiety and depression. You can regain control simply by taking control. When your hair begins to fall out in clumps, shave it off. The most traumatic part of loosing your hair is seeing it fall to the floor or waking up with in lying on your bed. Shaving your head will remove that anxiety. You are in control. You may also consider a hair removal service such as IPL. How does IPL laser hair removal work? Click here.
If being bald is not your style, purchase a wig or an assortment of hats and scarves to wear until your hair returns. Most insurance companies will pay for a wig, provided you have a prescription from your physician.
Request, from your physician, a prescription for a “cranial prostheses”. Your local beauty shop can help you choose a color that will match or suggest a new color that will flatter your complexion. You should speak with them about your eyelashes and brows as well.
If you decide you like being bald, protect your head from the sun as well as cold weather. Your scalp is not used to complete exposure and will burn and get cold quite easily.
If you simply cannot afford a wig, or a collection of scarves and hats, the American Cancer Society will help. Nonetheless, regardless of your financial situation, contact the local chapter and get involved with a support group. Sometimes just talking to someone who “has been there” can be the best medicine.