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Cancer patients should not ignore skincare when undergoing radiotherapy

Withstanding the side-effects of cancer treatment is often quite challenging because it leaves so much harmful imprint on the body that it becomes difficult for patients to continue with the treatment. Take, for example, the instances of skin damage that happens from radiation therapy that causes high discomfort and pain. To continue with the treatment by effectively countering the side-effects, cancer patients must learn about self-care that allows them to stay actively involved in their recovery. The greatest fear in cancer treatment is the ability of patients to cope with the side-effects. The inability to mitigate skin problems can turn them away from the treatment and eventually become fatal.

What causes radiation burns?

Cancer treatments aim at destroying the cancerous cells in the body, but in the process, it also destroys some healthy cells too, which is a limitation that we must live with. During radiation therapy, high energy radioactive substances enter the body through the area where the beam of light focuses to target the cancerous cells. The radiation affects the skin cells in the treatment area, which often do not get time to recover. The therapy keeps continuing at the close interval and causes severe skin burn, which is also known as radiation dermatitis. The sores and ulcers that become visible after radiation therapy and look like burns are the results of the skin peeling off quickly then it can grow back.

Give time to heal

It is almost common that almost 85% patients experience radiation burns or skin damage after radiation therapy. It causes a burning sensation and itching, which is hard to bear unless some therapeutic skincare cream or ointment is applied on it to soothe the condition. It would give time for new skin to grow, which take some weeks or even months, depending on the nature of skin damage and the health of patients. Looking for the best cream for radiation burns before the start of treatment will keep patients prepared to counter the side-effects by ensuring ongoing relief from pain and discomfort. This would help them to continue with the treatment.

Managing radiation burns

Creams are the most widely used remedy for radiation burns which can effectively reduce skin reactions such as pain and redness and prevent treatment disruptions. Calendula ointment and silver sulfadiazine cream are the recommended topical treatments. There are some other herbal creams too that work well and provides relief to patients by soothing the skin.

Besides using creams, there are some other treatment methods like oral and topical antibiotics and zinc that provides relief. However, a better way is to avoid scratching and itching the affected skin, thereby preventing aggravation of the condition. Avoiding chemical exposure from deodorants, perfumes, scented soaps, sun exposure and bathing in water that contains chlorine helps to prevent further skin damages except for what happens from the therapy.

Consulting a dermatologist when undergoing radiotherapy should give patients the right guidance to minimize the problems and keep it under control. It makes the treatment more bearable because preventing it might not always be possible.

About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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