Hair loss during chemo can be a very sensitive and traumatic event for women. Hair is such a huge part of our femininity. How we style our hair, the products we use and how we value our hair are very personal to a woman.
When I got told that I would lose my hair during chemo I never really thought about the impact it would have on me. I had always had long blonde hair. I never changed the style or colour. I suppose it was exciting to see what I looked like with a new hair do.
My hair started to fall out on Valentines Day 2012. My friend Kate was arriving that morning and we were off wig shopping. When clumps started falling out in the shower I had two choices, take control or lose it. I chose to take control. I decided I would rather have my head shaved than see it fall out gradually. Luckily the wig shop was attached to the hospital and they shaved heads too. I was going to kill two birds with one stone.
My hair was very long and I didn’t want to throw it away. I found a fantastic charity online called The Little Princess Trust. They provide real hair wigs to children who have lost their hair to cancer treatment or other illnesses. Donating my hair made the whole ordeal a positive one. Yes I was losing my hair but a little girl who needed it would benefit from it. It makes me smile knowing I have contributed in such a positive way. Even if it was a little traumatic for me.
Sometimes hair loss during chemo is inevitable. How you choose to cope with this is very personal. Three tips I would recommend to ease the stress of hair loss are as follows.
Hair loss tips during chemo
- If possible, donate your hair to a child who really needs it. This gives you more purpose to take control and have it shaved right at the beginning
- Given in, accept it and embrace the change. This will make it more fun when wig, hat and scarf shopping
- Remember that hair loss is temporary and for most women it grows back.
Hair loss during chemo can be traumatic. Choose to take control, own it and have fun with the short-term change.