During breast cancer treatment, the side effects from the medicines can be intense and impact every aspect of your life. Each person responds differently to the medicines, but there are some similar reactions. If you are undergoing treatment, here are some common side effects that are experienced and what you can do about them.
Cancer treatment can be physically taxing on your body. As a result, you can start to experience extreme fatigue. To combat the fatigue, it is important that you get regular exercise.
In addition to helping you beat fatigue, exercise has many other benefits. For instance, it can help lower your risk of blood clots, decrease nausea, and help you keep your weight under control. A healthy weight is very important while undergoing breast cancer treatment.
Exercise does not have to be overly strenuous. Simple activities, such as yoga and walking, can be enough. Your oncologist can help you pinpoint the level of activity that is best for you.
Depending on the type of treatment, mouth sores can sometimes occur. Mouth sores can impact your ability to eat and drink, which could interfere with the much-needed nourishment you need from food.
If you are experiencing mouth sores, you can suck on ice chips to alleviate the discomfort from them. You also need to avoid spicy foods and alcohol. Both can aggravate your condition. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and skip the whitening toothpaste and mouthwash until your mouth heals.
One of the most common side effects of breast cancer treatment is hair loss. Whether or not you lose your hair depends on the treatment and how your body responds to it. Although your hair might not grow back until treatment is complete, there are ways you can handle it.
A popular option is to purchase a custom-fitted wig. Some insurance providers even cover the cost of the wig as long as it is prescribed by the oncologist.
You can also opt to wear head coverings, such as scarves or hats. If you do, be creative with your choices and wear what makes you happy.
Some women choose to embrace how their heads look uncovered. You can even rotate between each option. Remember, the most important is being comfortable with your choice.
Consult with your oncologist about any other side effects you are experiencing. He or she can help pinpoint methods of dealing with the side effects and possibly make adjustments to your treatment to ease the symptoms you are experiencing.