Facing the challenge of illness can take a toll on every facet of your life, but a bit of TLC can go a long way toward soothing and healing skin that’s battled the harsh effects of chemo and radiation. According to Breastcancer.org, these treatments can leave skin dry, flaky, and more sensitive to exposure to sun, wind, and other elements. Taking a gentle, diligent approach to your daily care routine is more important now than ever. Here, are a few wise steps….
An ultra-gentle, creamy cleanser—one that’s free of harsh surfactants known to strip skin of its protective barrier—is a good choice right now. Best to use it at night only, though, when you’re removing makeup or environmental impurities; in the morning, all you really need is a splash of lukewarm water.
A daily dose of hydration, either from a rich creamy moisturizer or ointment, will help restore some of the dryness that has likely plagued your ravaged complexion, says Mario E. Lacouture, M.D. a dermatologist at NYC’s Memorial Sloan Kettering Hospital, who specializes in treating skin conditions that result from cancer treatment. He recommends applying it twice a day for optimal results.
The purer the product, the better—as harsh ingredients, like drying alcohol or fragrances can cause already sensitive skin to become even more finicky.
Protection from the rays is absolutely critical, and not just on sunny days. Religiously include an SPF of at least 30 in your regimen—either as part of your existing moisturizer, or worn on its own underneath your other, protective layers. “Most anticancer medications and radiation therapy increase your sensitivity to the sun, and studies have shown that skin cancer rates are greater in survivors,” explains Dr. Lacouture.
The skin here contains few oil and sweat glands and very little melanin…all of which protect against dehydrating rays. Using a soothing, SPF-packed lip balm throughout the day (minus aggressive ingredients like camphor or menthol, which can irritate tender lips) is always a good idea.
Remember, your goal now is a simple routine designed to embrace, heal, and protect your delicate skin…allowing you to focus your energy on being healthy, each and every day.
Pūr Skin Clinic offers the highest level of personalized care with advanced skin treatments performed by caring experts. Schedule your consultation with us for a truly one-of-a-kind experience and radiantly natural results designed specifically for you. We proudly serve patients in the Edmond, Shoreline, Mill Creek, and Wallingford/Seattle areas, as well as our destination patients from around the country and the globe.
307 Bell Street #103, Edmonds WA 98020
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