Other Helpful Tips
In addition to drying out your skin, cancer treatments can have some negative side effects to other parts of your body. But these simple solutions will help to make you more comfortable and feel more ladylike.
- Nosebleeds are a very un-ladylike topic, but are a common symptom of the drying effects of chemo. A simple saline solution like Ocean Nose Spray can add moisture back into nose and reduce the frequency or nosebleeds. It’s also helpful to keep tissues nearby … just in case.
- Dry, chapped and cracked lips are very common, so keep your favorite fragrance-free lip balm easily accessible. You might want to consider keeping lip balm in your purse, your car and in multiple spots around your home and office.
- Your hands and cuticles will become very dry from the chemo and multiple hand washings. Keep travel size tubes of your favorite hand cream around your house, purse, car and office. Make sure the cream you select is fragrance-free and does not contain active ingredients, which can stimulate the skin to shed its outer layer more quickly and actually make your skin even drier.
- You may experience dry eye during treatment. Drops may help, but if you are a contact lens wearer, your glasses will probably be more comfortable. Talk to your eye doctor about options that may work for you.
- Chemo and radiation can temporarily damage the salivary glands and reduce the production of saliva that keeps your mouth moist. This can make chewing, swallowing, tasting and talking more difficult. Dry mouth can also cause dental problems by disrupting the healthy balance of bacteria in your mouth. You can alleviate the effects of dry mouth by rinsing your mouth with a homemade solution of ½ t. salt, ½ t. baking soda in a cup of warm water several times a day. Over the counter products are also available. While a trip to the dentist during your treatment might not be advised, be sure to call your practitioner to let her know you are receiving chemo treatment. She can provide additional tips to help keep your smile bright during and after your treatment.
- Vaginal dryness is a delicate subject that can be upsetting to both you and your partner. You’ll have days that you feel great and crave intimacy. When the mood strikes, be sure to have an over the counter lubricant to help things. If that doesn’t help, talk to your doctor about prescription options to make you more comfortable.