During recovery from cancer and throughout chemotherapy, you want to optimize your healing potential by reducing stress. Having knowledge and strategies for dealing with hair loss reduces fear and encourages healing by reducing stress.
For some people, the fear of losing their hair is the most difficult stress that comes with their cancer diagnosis. Our hair is very much connected with our sense of self, our personal identity. Our culture celebrates hair and associates hair with health.
How Does Chemotherapy Cause Hair Loss?
Chemotherapy cures cancer by killing the the rapidly growing cancer cells; however; it also kills many other healthy cells, including cells on your head and scalp. It is this loss of cells near the scalp and the hair follicles that causes hair loss with chemotherapy.
What Can You Do to Prevent Hair Loss from Chemotherapy?
An ice cap or a cooling cap is a cap made of ice that is worn over the head during chemotherapy. It works by reducing the circulation and blood flow to the scalp.
Be vigilant regarding scalp health and scalp hygiene. Use a moisturizer for scalp dryness and use a very mild cleanser, perhaps a baby shampoo.
When Does Hair Loss Happen?
Hair loss from chemotherapy happens within 2-4 weeks after starting chemotherapy.
On average, it takes between 3 and 6 months for hair to regrow. Your hair may change color or texture, especially during the first growth.
Strategies for Coping During Hair Loss
Watching your own hair fall out, or finding it on your pillow, can cause extreme anxiety. Be sure to discuss any severe anxiety with your doctor. A hair net is a simple but effective way to secure your hair.
Many people opt for a short haircut to reduce shedding. Many choose to shave their head completely bald. Shaving your head eliminates the stress of waiting for hair loss to happen.
Wigs, Scarves, and Hats for Comfort and Fashion
Wigs today offer a vast array of choices of colors, styles and materials. Scarves, hats, and body jewelry for the head can also help you to feel confident and comfortable while your hair regrows.
Looking good really can go a long way towards helping you feel better, by improving your mood. Be bold and try a style, color or head covering that you’ve never tried before.
Hair loss as a result of cancer treatments can be both scary and confusing. If you are an individual that is going through treatment, Transitions Hair Loss Centers understand that you are coping with not only a serious medical condition, but also with the social stigma that accompanies hair loss. To find a center closest to you click here.
Photo Credit: anna_marie_skardova Via Pixabay