CANCER AND YOUR SKIN
The effects of cancer on your skin can leave it feeling dry, flaking and extremely sensitive. Products or treatments that you may have used without incident in the past, may now react adversely on your skin. It is important that women have sources for good and safe skin care during a traumatic and trying time. I can help them through some of the stress by minimizing the ravaging effects that chemo and radiation have on their skin, through expert treatments in a tranquil and soothing environment.
ULTRA SENSITIVE SKIN MEDI FACIAL™
A special relaxing treatment designed to help cancer Pink Ribbonpatients combat the side effects of cancer, especially those patients that are currently on chemotherapy treatments, and are experiencing chemo induced nausea. A specialized massage is used to help reduce pressure and swelling, and a series of soothing, non-irritating and hydrating skin care products are used to help skin feel soft and non-irritated. This treatment aids cancer patients maintain their self image and appearance as they progress through their cancer treatments or during recovery.
At home care of your skin is equally important. Following 4 simple steps will help to restore and maintain optimal skin. Marta Rey will recommend an appropriate regimen and specific products formulated for your skin.
BALANCING AND SOOTHING MEDI-FACIAL™
This treatment combines the use of all organic-natural skin care products to treat all skin types even the most delicate.. It helps protect the skin against free radical damage generated by the environment, and as a result of certain cancer treatment therapies. It has been shown to reduce the side effects from such treatments. Improves uneven complexion, acne, chafing, scar tissue and burns. Skin that has suffered from chemotherapy, radiation therapy or medications will look and feel much better. A skin care product protocol for home use will be advised.
The following tips will help you navigate some of the challenges that your skin may experience during cancer treatment.
KEEP YOUR SKIN MOIST AND IRRITANT FREE
Cancer treatment may affect your skin’s natural PH balance, because the amount of oil produced by the oil glands diminishes considerably, making your skin feel extra dry and irritated. Choose a skin care line with products formulated for sensitive skin, preferably organic and natural products, as well as fragrance free and alcohol free; products rich in anti-oxidants and natural trace minerals are ideal. Avoid products that contain retinol and acids of any kind. Refrain from using face soap when cleansing your skin, replacing it with a gentle cleansing emulsion instead. Avoid heavy deodorants or scents as well.
BE EXTRA CAREFUL
Do not scratch, rub or scrub your skin. Avoid hot showers, and use lukewarm water instead. After showering, pat your skin gently with a soft towel and make sure to apply an emollient body moisturizer. Apply moisturizer to your skin at least twice a day. Wear soft, non irritating fabrics next to your skin, and don’t forget to drink plenty of water.
(This regimen should be followed for your face as well as your body).
PROTECT YOUR SKIN FROM THE SUN
Excessive sun exposure is responsible for much of the skin damage associated with aging, and it is also the leading cause of skin cancer. Statistics don’t lie; Americans who reach the age of 65 will develop at least one skin cancer in their lifetime.
It takes only one time of getting serious sunburn, especially during childhood, or during your adolescent years, and you will increase the chances of developing a serious form of skin cancer -malignant melanoma- later in life.
Skin that receives radiation treatment has an increased risk of developing skin cancer in the future. Protecting your skin from the sun is a must, and a full spectrum sunscreen (UVA & UVB) will become your best companion.
An SPF factor tells you how long you can stay in the sun without getting sunburn. Studies show that products with a SPF of 25 or 30 provide great protection from harmful ultraviolet rays. Higher SPF is no better. The secret is in the application; remember to repeat sunscreen application every two hours for best protection.
Do not forget your lips. They contain few sweat and oil glands, so please use products that contain moisture-sealing ingredients and SPF protection, and avoid lip balms that contain menthol, camphor or phenol.
TAKE CARE OF ANY RASH
You may get acne-like rash on your face, chest, scalp or elsewhere on your body. If you experience a severe or a persistent rash, a pain medication, an antihistamine or acne medication may be prescribed. With some newer skin cancer treatments, a rash or other skin side effect may be a sign that the treatment is working.
PRETTY HANDS AND FEET
During or after your cancer treatment your fingernails and toenails may become brittle, dry or cracked, and may even become ingrown. Consult with your doctor before having a manicure. Wear rubber gloves when washing dishes and performing other household chores. Wash your hands with a gentle soap and moisturize immediately afterwards. Take time for your hands and feet 3 times a week, and apply a heavy emollient cream and cover them with cotton gloves and socks for at least thirty minutes. They will be glad you did!