Three Tips for Managing the Side Effects of Breast Cancer
After a breast cancer diagnosis, chemotherapy is a common treatment. While this option is a great way to get rid of the cancer cells themselves, there are many side effects of chemotherapy that can be difficult to deal with. We have three tips for managing some of the most common side effects women experience.
Nausea is one of the most common side effects when undergoing chemotherapy. Many women find that the queasiness is so terrible they want to forego treatment completely in order to avoid it. However, there are some new medications available that help women get through it without feeling sick to their stomach in the days following chemo. You can speak with your doctor about the anti-nausea drug options and what is best for your needs.
The majority of women undergoing treatment for breast cancer feel some kind of fatigue that tends to get worse over the course of chemotherapy. This can sometimes be due to the development of anemia inside the body, which can easily be treated. If not, resting throughout the day and assuring you get ample amount of sleep throughout the night can help ease the pain of fatigue.
Some chemotherapy treatments can leave your mind feeling fuzzy. Try to stay mentally active by reading or completing puzzles. Use a notepad and a calendar to help yourself keep track of upcoming events or reminders that you think of throughout the day, and take someone with you to your doctor’s appointments so they can help you remember the information you gain there. Sticking to a routine is another great way to prevent forgetfulness.
If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with breast cancer and would like additional support, the Women Helping Other Women Breast Cancer Support Group meets at Baptist Women’s Health Center on the second Tuesday of each month at 7 pm.