10 tips on how to get through radiation sanely
Radiation therapy is a part of some breast cancer patients’ journeys. When I talk to patients on the phone about radiation, they tell me how mentally and physically draining the process can be. Well, I did some research, took some notes from The Breast Cancer Charities of America’s beautiful resource Create Wellness, and decided to compile a list of 10 tips on getting through radiation sanely.
Listen to your body: as with any part of your breast cancer treatment and journey, listen to your body. Don’t try to over exert yourself, and take breaks as needed whether it’s at work, at home, or even while running errands!
Journal your Journey: I’m not an expert on radiation therapy, but I do know the beauty of journaling on any journey. Release all your emotions, your achievements, your lows, your pains, your gains all in a journal. Keeping track of how you feel emotionally and physically will push you through your journey and keep track of all the progress you have made to survivorship! It’s also a good reference to share any points of concern with your doctor.
Cover Up: Try to spend limited time in direct sunlight, as it may irritate the radiation site. Wear clothing that covers the site and seek shade when you can.
Indulge a Little: Be aware that your body is fighting and deserves some TLC. Treat yourself to a pedicure, a nice bath with some candles, or even just a nice date night with your significant other!
Soak up QT: Take in and soak up quality time with your support system. Have your friends over for some trashy t.v. and gossip, spend time coloring and drawing with your little ones, or even take an easy stroll with your loved one. Soak up the moments and use the time with your support system as a time to vent, or just forget about treatment for an hour or two.
Take the Lending Hand: I’m sure there have been offers from many people around you to help out with day-to-day activities. Whether it is helping out with laundry, dropping and picking up the kiddos from school, or making dinner it is not seen as a weakness when taking the lending hand. Letting others help out will give you more time to focus on you and YOUR HEALTH!
Let ‘em Loose: Try to go bra-less as much as possible. This will help any potential wounds heal faster and keep any additional irritation from occurring.
Ask Away: Don’t be fearful that you have “silly” or “unimportant” questions. If you have questions on your journey about your radiation, or anything else you may be going through, bring them to your doctor or support group.
Stay Hydrated: While this is important at all stages of life, it is SUPER important to drink enough fluids during treatment. Investing in a cute reusable water bottle is a great way to get all your sips in throughout the day!
Patience is Key: Finally, all great things take time, even your road to survivorship and recovery! So understand there will be good days and not-so-good days, but with patience, you will prevail 😊