5 Ways to Feel Beautiful While Fighting Breast Cancer
This article was updated on: 09/15/2018
Breast cancer is the most common cancer in American women after skin cancer, according to breastcancer.org. About 1 in 8 American women will develop invasive breast cancer in her lifetime. Breast cancer treatment can affect your appearance.
How will breast cancer treatment affect my appearance?
Some breast cancer treatment may involve a mastectomy, or surgery to remove the entire breast, according to the American Cancer Society. A total mastectomy removes the nipple, areola, and some skin and a double mastectomy removes both breasts.
Other breast cancer treatment may involve chemotherapy, or cancer-killing drugs that are given by vein or by mouth according to the American Cancer Society. Side effects of chemotherapy include hair loss, nail changes, and weight changes.
5 ways to feel beautiful while fighting breast cancer
- Sign up for a Look Good Feel Better workshop. Look Good Feel Better holds group workshops that teach beauty techniques to female cancer patients to “help them combat appearance-related side effects of cancer treatment.” LGFB workshops are free and provide make-up kits to women currently undergoing cancer treatment, about to undergo cancer treatment, or have recently completed cancer treatment.
- Get a free wig. Organizations like Lolly’s Locks and Friends Are by Your Side may provide free wigs to breast cancer patients and others facing cancer treatment who are unable to afford a wig on their own. According to Lolly’s Locks, opting to wear a wig may help maintain a positive image and sense of normalcy. Lolly’s Locks wigs are typically customized for each recipient.
- Pamper yourself, recommends the American Cancer Society. Get a manicure and pedicure, a facial or a massage. Check with a doctor first to make sure any beauty treatment is safe for you.
- Wear a breast prosthesis. A breast prosthesis is an artificial breast that can be worn after breast cancer treatment such as a lumpectomy or mastectomy that removes breast tissue. Breast prosthesis are made of silicone, foam or fiberfill according to the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance. A mastectomy bra is a special bra with pockets that holds a breast prosthesis. Most women should be able to wear a breast prosthesis with two to eight weeks after surgery once wounds have healed and stiches have been removed.
- Exercise each day, recommends the American Cancer Society (ACS). Exercise may help control your weight, improve your self-esteem and keep muscles from wasting due to inactivity. Each breast cancer patient’s exercise program should be based on what’s safe and what works for them according to ACS. You may have to exercise less than usual or at a lower intensity during breast cancer treatment.
Do you have questions about Medicare coverage of breast cancer treatment?
If you or someone you’re caring for is undergoing cancer treatment, adequate coverage can help you manage your health costs and make sure you’re able to get the care you need. If you have any questions, we’re here to help. To get help over the phone or by email, use the links below to have me contact you. If you’d like to browse Medicare plan options on your own, just use the Compare Plans buttons on this page.