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FIND A RADIATION ONCOLOGIST

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Caring for Yourself

Cancer treatment can be challenging but there are many people that can help support you. Reach out to your family, friends, and your oncology care team for help. Many cancer treatment teams include counselors, social workers, and dieticians that specialize in supporting you through cancer treatment.

  • Try to exercise during treatment. This can include light exercise such as walking or stretching. If you would like advice on exercising during treatment your doctors can refer you to professionals, like physical therapists, that can guide you through safe exercise during cancer treatment.
  • Practice healthy sleep hygiene during your treatment. This includes trying to go to bed at the same time every night, not using electronic devices in bed, and paying attention to how foods and drinks such as caffeine can affect your sleep.
  • Eat a healthy, balanced diet. There are no known special diets that make radiation or cancer treatments work better. If you have questions about your diet, discuss with your doctor and they may recommend you to see a registered dietician.
  • Be very careful with your skin that is within the treatment field. Gently wash it with mild soap and warm water (no scrubbing) throughout treatment. Your doctor may give you lotions to apply to the area. Be extra careful with sun exposure as the sun can worsen radiation skin irritation. Cover treated areas with clothing or use high SPF sunscreen (50+). Remember to reapply often, every 90-minutes or as directed on the bottle. Even after the skin irritation from radiation has gone away that area of the body will be at a higher risk for sunburn.
  • If you develop a fever (100.4o F or higher) or feel sick, notify your care team immediately.
  • Ask questions. You will meet with your doctor regularly during radiation, write your questions down and bring them to your visit.
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