If you've decided to go through chemotherapy as a method of treating your cancer, you might be concerned about the common side effect of hair loss. It's important to remember that, for many people, hair loss is a small price to pay for the successful treatment of their cancer and that not all forms of chemotherapy will actually lead to hair loss. If your doctor has informed you that hair thinning and loss are possible side effects of the drugs you'll be taking, it's possible to adopt some healthy habits that can slow the loss of your hair and, in some cases, even prevent it. Here are three techniques you can adopt.
Use Of A Cold Cap
If your doctor hasn't talked to you about the use of a cold cap, it's important to ask about obtaining one. This FDA-approved device is essentially a hat filled with cold packs to chill the surface of your head. The premise is that when your skin gets cold, its blood vessels become restricted. In turn, this restriction can limit the amount of chemotherapy that reaches your hair, which can prevent loss. If you aren't able to obtain a licensed cold cap by renting it from your hospital, you can make a rudimentary one by placing cold packs inside a hat or a towel that you use to wrap your head.
Be Gentle With Your Hair
Being gentle with your hair can reduce the speed at which your hair thins. Think about how you might notice several hairs on the bottom of your shower or your bathroom floor after washing your hair or blow-drying it vigorously. These harsh movements can pull healthy hairs out of your scalp, so it's important to be more careful when your hair follicles aren't as strong due to the chemotherapy. One method is to use the mildest shampoo you can find, such as one recommended for children. It can also be effective to wash your hair less-frequently than usual and, when it comes time to dry your hair, gently pat your head with a dry towel or allow the hair to air dry.
Avoid Coloring Your Hair
It's important to be gentle to your hair leading up to your start of chemotherapy too. It's best to avoid bleaching or otherwise coloring your hair prior to your treatment. These methods can often weaken the hair follicles or make them brittle, which is the last thing you need when you're trying to keep your hair as healthy as possible.
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