Few Hints & Tips

I was 26 when I was diagnosed with breast cancer, I had so many trivial when i think about it but important questions for me, what would reduce operation scars, deal with symptoms, reduce or stop hair loss etc. I found that sometimes I didn’t know where to get the answers from, I have noted down some of them for you, as you may also find them useful.
Please remember these are tips, hints that I have found helpful and this is only my opinion based upon advice I have received and what I have experienced. Always check with your own doctor and consultant as they may not be suitable for everyone. Hope its saves you some time though and may help…

Menopausal Symptoms
• To relieve the menopausal symptom of ‘hot flushes’ use sage, either from health stores or in cooking

Scaring / Healing
• Bio oil will help reduce scaring
• Vitamin C will help with healing and scaring
• Rosehip Oil will help with appearance of scars
• Silver plasters can help with scaring

Freeze Cap / Cold Cap
• Cover your hair in hair conditioner before the cap is applied. The cap will freeze the conditioner helping the cap to work
• Do not wash your hair 48 hours before you are due to use the cap
• Do not wash your hair 48 hours after the freeze cap was used (leaving in conditioner)
• If you are allowed to take, take head ache tablets half an hour before the freeze cap is put on
• Gel strips usually for migraines are helpful, apply one or two on your forehead before the cap is applied this will relive pressure on your temples and help with headaches, one may also be useful if applied to the back of your neck helping with pressure
• My freeze cap was applied at least one hour before treatment and left on for two hours after treatment had finished
• Let freeze cap de-freeze before removing
• The freeze cap will work better, the better the fit

Hair Care (if trying to save your hair with the freeze cap)
• During your treatment try and only wash your hair weekly
• Use a wide tooth comb to comb hair and comb gently
• Sleep on a silk pillow case this will avoid friction on your hair whilst sleeping
• Avoid using conditioner when you do wash your hair as this will keep it cleaner for longer as you can only wash it weekly, when combing after washing be careful without conditioner your hair will be tangled comb gently
• When washing your hair use a shampoo as recommended by the hospital or from PINK (details below)
• Wash your hair gently avoiding pulling on your hair or adding pressure on to your hair

Tying head scarves
• Although you can purchase head scarves quite easily tying them is a mystery, a company called Headstrong can advise details below.

• If you get a dry cough whilst on medication and would prefer not to take or can not take medicine for this, boil 2 pealed lemons for 5 minutes and add honey 2/3 table spoons full. This can be drunk warm or cold as preferred.
• Honey can help sooth the throat

• Arrowroot biscuits
• Ginger biscuits
• Soda water
• Pineapple

Holiday Insurance (who I have been told do not over charge people who have be poorly)
• Columbus Direct
• Aberdeen Insurance Services
• Direct Line

• If you are required to pay for many prescriptions a form can be gained from your GP that will allow you to pay a one off sum per year instead of per prescription. This will work out cheaper.

Injection relief
• Some injections especially implant injections can hurt, the nurses gave me a cream that I applied at home to the area that would be injected before I went to the hospital. When I was then injected I hardly felt anything, might be worth a mention.

• Drink 3 litres of water each day, this will help your kidneys and flush out your system, visits to the loo will increase but this will get better after about a week

• Good skin care
• Gentle exercise
• Detailed information can be found on www.lymphoedema.org

Useful Contacts

Advanced Appearance (PINK)
0121 350 3826
0121 382 8423
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www.pnkuk.com or www.advancedappearance.com

Wigs and Pieces.com Ltd
301a Queen Street
East Yorkshire
HU19 2NW
01964 615577

Tel: 0121 607 7971

Hi sralph

Welcome to the forums and thank you for such a helpful and informative post.

I have added a link our Headstrong service that you recommended. HeadStrong is available at various centres throughout the North and Midlands, as well as Scotland and new services are also planned for the rest of the country.


Kind Regards
Breast Cancer Care