14 Step Program for Surviving Chemotherapy
1. DRINK A TON OF WATER!! (before, during, and after treatments) I know at times when you will just feel like you can’t, but please trust me and drink. Staying hydrated will help your body.
2. REST! You need your strength. Do not stress about taking a nap, even if you have never done it before. Sleeping helps heals the body
3. Eat when you can but try to avoid eating your favorite or spicy foods. Spicy foods could promote nausea and a pronounced heartburn. If you get sick from eating your favorite foods you may never want to eat them again.
4. Try to stay ahead of nausea, GINGER is a great remedy (we include a bag of our special “TEAL”RIFFIC TAC in our chemo comfort bags that are GINGER based. If you are prescribed nausea pills from your doctor take them.
5. You may experience mouth sores during treatment. Always use ALCOHOL FREE mouthwash. The mouthwash containing alcohol will burn. Your teeth can become brittle and gums sore. Using soft bristle toothbrushes, plastic silverware and straws may also help ease the metallic taste you may experience from the sores and medications. Always consult your oncologist before seeing the dentist.
6. If you start to feel depressed PLEASE reach out to your doctor and support system. YOU ARE NOT ALONE! Seek group or one on one therapy.
7. Try to use a sensitive skin lotion, cancer treatments will dry your skin which can cause cracking and soreness.
8. You will taste the medication that is given through your IV or PORT, try to chew on gum, or mints before, during, and after treatments to help avoid tasting it.
9. Prepare for treatments to take a while. Dress comfortably, take books, puzzles, music, IPADS, or whatever you need to help you feel comfortable to pass the time. Don’t forget your phone charger.
10. Pay attention to your body, voice any concerns to your doctor .
11. If you happen to lose your hair, please try not to stress, even though it is a shock, I promise it will grow back. Which normally starts to grow back after your last treatment.
12. If you are prescribed a steroid, and have never been prescribed before, be prepared for jitteriness, up and down, and can’t stay still feeling. If things get too bad reach out to your doctor to make sure these are normal reactions to the medication
13. Co-pays.. Is your insurance not covering your treatments or not enough? Reach out to the manufacturer of the medication that you are prescribed. Most do offer a prepaid discount card to help offset cost.
14. STAY POSITIVE!!!