This post is in response to an inquiry about how to care for “natural (kinky) hair” after chemotherapy treatment… After searching for “chemo hair remedies’ on the Internet, there did not seem to be a website, which had ‘distinguished‘ natural (kinky) hair from any other types of hair after chemotherapy. As I thought about Chemotherapy, and why people must go through this formidable health challenge, I concluded that Cancer does not ‘distinguish‘ whose body it chooses to visit. It is an unexpected, intense, and distressing experience that has a sudden and powerful effect on somebody’s emotions and physical well-being. Having said that, I want to share with you “natural” remedies for your new growth. I urge those of you out there who have had chemotherapy to share your ideas by making comments at the end of this post.
Getting your hair ready for Chemotherapy is probably one of the most difficult challenges a person can be confronted with. I have heard that spiritual guidance and sheer will are some of the options those who have to deal with this test choose to help them. Of course, family and friends are some of the other support systems one relies on. But how do you get your hair ready for this ordeal? The Mayo Clinic website had suggestings for pre/after-treatments, which are listed below. Don’t forget to click the link provided at the end for more details.
Mayo Clinic is a not-for-profit medical practice and medical research group based in Rochester, Minnesota, specializing in treating difficult cases (tertiary care). Patients are referred to Mayo Clinic from across the U.S. and the world, and it is known for innovative and effective treatments.via Mayo Clinic – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
Before (Chemotherapy) treatment
Be gentle to your hair. Get in the habit of being kind to your hair. Don’t bleach, color or perm your hair — this can weaken it. Air-dry your hair as much as possible and avoid heating devices such as curling irons and hot rollers. Strengthening your hair now might make it more likely to stay in your head a little longer during treatment.
Baby your remaining hair. Continue your gentle hair strategies throughout your chemotherapy treatment. Use a soft brush. Wash your hair only as often as necessary. Consider using a gentle shampoo.
Continue gentle hair care. Your new hair growth will be especially fragile and vulnerable to the damage caused by styling products and heating devices. Hold off on coloring or bleaching your new hair until it grows stronger. Processing could damage your new hair and irritate your sensitive scalp.
Be patient. It’s likely that your hair will come back slowly and that it might not look normal right away. But growth takes time, and it also takes time to repair the damage caused by your cancer treatment. via Chemotherapy and hair loss: What to expect during treatment
Maintaining a routine for your hair after chemotherapy:
Step 1 –Wash hair gently. The AHLC advises restricting shampooing to twice a week. Use a shampoo formulated for damaged or dry hair, followed up with a conditioner formulated for thin or fine hair. Massage your scalp gently while you’re in the shower to loosen up dead skin cells.
Step 2 – Avoid towel drying your hair. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, vigorous rubbing can damage healthy hair, as the hair is more vulnerable when it’s wet. Simply wrap a towel around your hair and let it absorb the water.
Step 3 – Let your hair air dry. The heat from a blow dryer can damage new hair growth, says the AHLC–and it can damage healthy hair as well. The AAD advises limiting use of blow dyers and other heated styling tools in general. If you eventually start to use a blow dryer again, wait until your hair is barely damp to use it. via How To Grow Hair Back After Chemotherapy | LIVESTRONG.COM.
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Gentle Products – The two websites listed below have natural products that might be gentle for your scalp and hair type after chemotherapy. Just click the link provided.
AHLC – American Hair Loss Council
AAD – American Academy of Dermatology
I hope this is helpful 🙂
2 thoughts on “Chemotherapy Hair: Caring for & Repairing”
Thank you for the maintenance tips! I just finished chemo 6 weeks ago and have been unsure how often to wash my ‘buzz cut’.
You are welcome. Best of luck for your continued well-being.