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Tips on caring for your scalp during chemotherapy

Updated: Nov 13, 2023

Chemotherapy can have various side effects, including effects on the skin and scalp. Here are some tips on caring for your scalp during chemotherapy:

Keep the Scalp Moisturized:

  • Chemotherapy can cause dryness and sensitivity. Use a mild, fragrance-free moisturizer to keep your scalp hydrated.

  • Avoid products with harsh chemicals that may irritate the skin.

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Gentle Cleansing:

  • Use a mild, sulfate-free shampoo to cleanse your scalp.

  • Wash your hair less frequently to avoid further drying. Consider washing every 2-3 days or as needed.

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Avoid Heat:

  • Skip hot showers and opt for lukewarm water when washing your hair.

  • Avoid using hot styling tools such as hair dryers and straighteners.


Protect Your Scalp:

  • Wear a soft cap or scarf to protect your scalp from the sun, wind, and cold weather.

  • If you prefer, consider using a wig or other head coverings for added protection and comfort.


Opt for headwear made from soft, breathable fabrics like cotton or bamboo to reduce irritation.


Sun Protection:

  • If you're spending time outdoors, use sunscreen on your scalp to protect it from the sun's harmful rays.


Avoid Harsh Chemicals:

  • Steer clear of hair dyes, perms, and other harsh chemical treatments during chemotherapy.

  • Check the ingredients of any hair care or styling products you use to ensure they are gentle and suitable for sensitive skin.


Scalp Massage:

  • Gently massage your scalp to improve blood circulation. Use your fingertips in a gentle circular motion.


Consult with Your Healthcare Team:

  • If you experience any unusual symptoms or discomfort, consult with your oncologist or healthcare team for guidance.

  • They may recommend specific products or provide additional advice based on your individual situation.


Stay Hydrated and Maintain a Healthy Diet:

  • Drink plenty of water to stay hydrated, which can contribute to the overall health of your skin and scalp.

  • Follow a balanced diet with a focus on nutrient-rich foods to support your body during chemotherapy.


*Remember that everyone's experience with chemotherapy is unique, and it's crucial to communicate openly with your healthcare team about any concerns or changes you notice. They can provide personalized advice and recommend products that suit your specific needs during this challenging time.


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