“As women begin treatments, they know that there will be changes. Intellectually, it registers,” says Louanne Roark, the executive director of the Look Good Feel Better Foundation, which helps cancer patients deal with treatment appearance side effects. But it’s often not until they actually begin to see these changes — hair in the shower drain, looking in the mirror and feeling like it’s not them looking back — that it really sets in emotionally, she says.
It can be helpful to look normal, even if you don’t feel normal; it can help you feel more in control of at least one aspect of your life. Read on for how to apply some self-care and pay attention to yourself as a woman rather than a patient.