Introduction to Skin + Cancer
When receiving chemotherapy or radiation - do I need to change my daily skin care routine?
When a cancer diagnoses is confirmed - the last thing on your mind is, "How will this affect my skin?" While chemotherapy or radiation is a path for destruction to those harmful cells invading the body - it can also damage the healthy ones along the way. Skin can be left fragile and dry - stripped of all the healthy fats, oils and waters that once were. Because skin is the first protective line of defense against the sun, bacteria, and infections - it's important to take extra cautionary measures during and after treatment. Opt for skin care products with minimal and only essential ingredients that ensure the safest rehydration and nourishment. Seek products with high protection sunscreen to protect your now sensitized complexion and body, and use gentle, milky cleansers to avoid tugging or pulling on dry skin. Choose skin care products that help alleviate these nagging side effects so you can focus on you.
Do's and Don'ts When Starting Cancer Treatment
Did You Know
Skin irritation and dryness were the two most troublesome side effects reported during cancer therapies.
Changing Your Routine
While undergoing cancer treatments, skin can be particularly sensitive - be sure to apply gentle skin care products to avoid exacerbating the side effects.
An emollient is an ingredient that increases moisture levels; look for essential fatty acids to help restore skin's barrier.
Upgrading Your Moisturizer
Chemotherapy and radiation have many side effects – dry skin being one of them. While dry skin may seem like any easy fix with just any moisturizer, discomfort may persist when using an ineffective cream. If left untreated, the skin loses its ability to retain moisture, which can lead to irritation, infections and even lack of sleep. Look for rich, restorative moisturizers that are free from fragrance and parabens, which are known to aggravate and disrupt skin’s natural microbiome.
Tips for Better Hydration
A moisturizer infused with humectants and emollients keep skin hydrated by trapping in moisture to your skin. Follow these key regimen steps to restore hydration to your delicate skin:
sunscreen alone is not enough
Keeping your skin healthy requires multiple forms of sun protection.
How the Sun Effects Skin
By using a high protection, daily sunscreen you can provide your skin with the defense it needs against damaging sun rays.
UVA RAYS can penetrate through clouds and glass to reach deep into the skin causing skin to age
UVB RAYS are at their most intense exposure from 10am to 4pm, causing sunburns and even skin cancer
Which type of sunscreen filter to use:
Physical filters, or mineral sunscreens, are primarily formulated with Titanium Dioxide and Zinc Oxide to scatter and reflect UV rays. Mineral filters sit on the surface and don't penetrate the skin, reducing the risk of irritation. Mineral sunscreens should be the last step in a skin care regimen – that is AFTER all your serums and moisturizers.
Get the Facts
Provide surgical wounds with a healthy healing environment to minimize risks of infection and scarring
Tips for Optimal Recovery
PROMOTE AN IDEAL HEALING ENVIRONMENT
STOP THE BLEEDING
Apply direct pressure with a clean cloth, tissue or gauze.
CLEANSE THE LESION
Use water to help maintain a clean area around the wound.
USE A TREATMENT CREAM
Creams with antibacterial properties help promote healing.
Healing process takes time, it may take months and even up to a year.
FEED YOUR SKIN
Vitamins C and A, found in fruits and vegetables, are essential nutrients for the healing process.
AVOID COMMON MISTAKES
DON’T DRY OUT A WOUND
Keeping skin hydrated speeds up healing and minimize potential scarring, so cover it with ointment and a bandage.
AVOID THE SUN
Protect any surgical scars with high protection sunscreen, formulated for delicate areas, to prevent hyperpigmentation.
DON’T PICK OR SCRATCH A SCAB
Scabs act as a natural protective band aid while skin heals underneath.