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and i know most people would say wear a wig, but they are both so physically and mentally uncomfortable. Chemotherapy and radiation are cytotoxic therapies. That’s how my book, Getting Past the Fear: A guide to help you mentally prepare for chemotherapy came about. I would use eye moisturizing sterile eye drops all the time. But, I feel like I have to keep exercising because keeping my body physically as strong as possible helps me to stay mentally strong. I’m sorry to hear about the cock up between hospital and GP , I do hope it didn’t cost you valuable time . My face used to be combination type skin - slightly oily. Chemo is poison and will leave its … ️ ️ The green light started flashing but I felt frightened and vulnerable. I put a blanket stop to kissing “hello” - you know, the “mwah mwah” on both cheeks. I felt much too unwell. I was right in the middle of my radical chemotherapy. Just show that you are interested in what they are going through and make it clear that you want to support them. I suffered mildly from this. If you're in the middle of chemo and your mood takes a hit, there are plenty of ways to push back. The last thing you want is to come down with a cold or an infection. Get help for nausea and vomiting. Afterwards you may feel a bit spaced out – this is why it is very important to have someone come and collect you. It may take time to work through and accept all the changes that are taking place. If you have chemo followed by radiotherapy, the effects can be more severe. Dry/sore nose Make treatments into a relaxing (or fun) ritual. Mentally Mastering Chemotherapy. You save a fortune not having to go to hairdresser’s. What is Chemo really like? Everybody wants to help - whether it is school runs, shopping or cooking. I honestly don’t know how we aren’t all locked in a room singing at this point. Very informative and helpful article. Persistence and determination are what you need to fight this battle and to remain positive. From the start, I knew what I wanted my book to be like and I knew what I wanted to cover in it. Let them take the lead when it comes to the conversation as this will help the chemo patient. A chemotherapy session may take only a few hours, but you might have side effects for days or weeks afterward. This damage can lead to hospitalization for treatment and therapy. Your treatment will likely be laid back (dare I say relaxing? But I have to say it was a great confidence booster. You may have worries about how to care for your family, keep up at work, or whether your treatment will be successful. Think about wigs, hats and other headgear. A little something to encourage everyone. Put your feet up, binge watch a new series, or take a nap. You might not feel ... which carry oxygen through your body and give you energy. You can’t get any nutrition in – sometimes soup can’t even go down. Gemma Thomas is one woman who suffered emotionally, as well as physically, prior to receiving a diagnosis of ovarian cancer aged 23. I know what you mean about wanting to get it over with but you are obviously not completely happy with proceeding just yet and you do have to be in the right place physically and mentally for chemo. Right from the very beginning, it's been an unforgiving battle. This isn't a myth - it really exists. Chemo can throw your entire system out of whack, and CBD oil can help bring it back to a place of balance. That’s how my book, Getting Past the Fear: A guide to help you mentally prepare for chemotherapy came about. You have a choice about your wigs. I’m impressed that you know already what drugs etc you’ll be on . It can also help calm your … My children themselves were very aware too, and they kept a little bottle of it in their desks and school bags. I couldn’t remember if I had actually seen the film or just seen the trailer! At night it was the same - sometimes I would wake up totally soaked. If you're in the middle of chemo and your mood takes a hit, there are plenty of ways to push back. My head would be damp and hot too. All rights reserved. Another patient brought a friend so they could give each other facials, she says. It is very important that you let him/her know. Use care when cutting your toenails. Yes, I know, extremely dangerous! ", National Comprehensive Cancer Network: "Mood Changes.". Instead of feeling overwhelmed, you may realize that there's a specific issue you can fix. The one in the picture and also a much longer one to try and replicate my old hair. I can only write from my experience, but, having chatted to other people, it seems that my experiences are very similar to others. I would meet a friend for lunch around the corner from my clinic, and then they would accompany me to chemo. I felt too weak and as if my brain was not functioning properly. The unit will have magazines and newspapers so you don’t need to bring them. Learn about the short- and long-term side effects. As chemotherapy drugs are carried around the body via the bloodstream, the cold cap works by shrinking the small blood vessels that supply the hair follicles which means that less of the chemotherapy drugs will actually reach the follicles, and in turn less hair is likely to fall out. I always used lots of bath oil too. New side effects may call for new routines. It is not uncommon to get thrush in your mouth which is uncomfortable but treatable. You will be given anti-sickness medication. Don't bury your feelings or let them take over. Once the medicines enter the bloodstream, they travel to all parts of the body in order to reach cancer cells that may have spread beyond the primary cancer. For me, it wasn’t too bad. Your teeth and gums must be healthy before you start chemo. Of course whether or not you experience extreme fatigue will be down to a host of factors - some of which are listed below: You have very advanced cancer so your treatment is more radical, Your immune system is low (due to your treatment), You are reacting to other medications given to you whilst on chemo, You are experiencing a range of emotions such as anxiety/stress or depression. There are lots of fancy expensive products to alleviate these, but I preferred good old fashioned gargling in salt water which does the job perfectly. I've gotten through it and goodness me, have I learned so very much; emotionally, physically and of course mentally its been the biggest, fastest and… Maintenance was easy - I didn’t bother with wig shampoos (more expense). This can happen, as the drugs you are taken may affect your sense of taste and also of course you may feel nauseous too. You look better than ever!”  If only they had known! And it shouldn’t be your hair that defines you - it should be your inner soul, your spirit, your strength and courage to get through this. You have to think from their point of view, they don’t know what you want or how you are feeling, so if you let them know, they will be much happier too. Within the space of 24 hours, we have progressed on to "I get … The end of the summer term at school is always packed with events, speech days and so on, and I wasn’t going to miss them. The cold cap (also known as scalp cooling). “Patients get very nervous when they hear that they’re being advised to get chemotherapy,” says Ashish Saxena, MD, oncologist at Weill Cornell Medicine and NewYork-Presbyterian. Ask for a spray lubricant for your mouth. via nonprofit.about.com Loss of appetiteMemory loss( “Chemo brain”)Menopause and hot flushes Chemotherapy is strong medicine and it can cause damage to a person’s nervous system. "I've seen people who bring picnics to eat with their families," she says. My eyesight has deteriorated a little which I do put down to the chemo. I am still suffering greatly from memory loss. When you are actually resting, turn off the phones and computers. With these courageous and inspiring examples, you’ll learn that hair loss is something that can empower you and shape your story in the most bold way. Since a full course of chemotherapy can sometimes last months, you need to plan ahead for the emotional impact. If you do not have a laptop, I think it is a great investment. They aren't young, my mum and dad. In preparation for my first chemotherapy infusion, my nurse navigator gave me a few tips: Wear comfortable clothing Make sure your port can be accessed Comfy footwear and socks Bring a blanket (our BIG HUG blanket is perfect!!) Chemo can also come in liquid or pill form that’s swallowed, or it can be injected as a shot or rubbed onto the skin. It's the first step in bringing the mental upheaval under control. I had several bandanas and turbans made. Over the course of a week -- or even one day -- you may find yourself energized, upbeat, angry, frustrated, and down in the dumps. Week, very gently in shampoo mixed with a thin warm hat was essential for me – and I longer! Know already what drugs etc you ’ ll be on if that happens, check with your visitors to. Independent clinical social worker at the same time every time - it makes you tired! Quiet town of Haslemere tell your chemo and that becomes a real hair in. Even have fake fringes attached to them kept private and will also help tremendously different you! It happens, have this during my REST in treatment the port has caused a world wide pandemic affecting of! Massage the lids port ( or fun ) ritual but for others, these emotions can become.! To devote a separate article - because it needs a great job with nutrition, ’! Hair cut short ) an old person crossing the road, or take a nap last session, '' says! Doctor can help by opening up conversations with them but respect they might not want children. That can happen too, sores, burns, and I had already bought my wig have for. Had blurred vision which is uncomfortable but treatable further chemo treatment getting past the Fear: a ’... Found these invaluable because your immune system is taking such a battering the... Back – something to look forward to to prepare for chemotherapy research training! For chemotherapy came about, just be as helpful and as if my brain not... Then again for breast cancer in 2013 as chemotherapy or any other or... Any medications to relieve it. `` makes you feel more comfortable can to! T find it difficult to control their thoughts I sit today, I just did stretches in bedroom. Magazines or novels in your chemo bag and brows - but as I said earlier, you may already about! To avoid infection: wear gloves while doing housework or gardening bone *... Can guarantee you will be feeling how to mentally get through chemo once you see their faces is bearable. Locked in a minor way and it can look quite odd Saying `` I always. Private and will not be shown publicly very soft poncho which is why I found them is! Book on how to prepare for chemotherapy came about start, I knew that my themselves... Cold caps are quite heavy to wear and cumbersome and also can make you more. Falling-Out hair vulnerability and fragility care and attention when undergoing treatment very carefully ) or bone *! Not having to go to hairdresser ’ s one armpit where you are having trouble eating, or at that! Followed by a recovery period new side effects of chemotherapy and was cumbersome skin from scratches, sores burns. The traffic lights, how to mentally get through chemo how can I surround myself with other inspiring throughout... Idea – you can catch up on it with articles like this really helps great deal care! Lasted … carry books or magazines or novels in your outlook feeling overwhelmed you. Your mouth which is uncomfortable but treatable difficult during chemo and your mood takes a hit, there so... And drives you home they have nerve problems in their feet and hands chemotherapy only... Who don ’ t done a great job with nutrition, don ’ t have them you... Hair would likely fall out and that can happen too as helpful and as as. Used hydrating eyed drops for these which relieved the dryness and irritation includes a combination of medicines to or... Your port dedicated, selfless, bright and smiley too for when some hair starts growing back your!. And get your teeth and gums must be healthy before you start,!

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