Dealing with hair loss can be difficult, for just about anyone. For patients battling cancer, hair loss adds additional stress during an already difficult time. Most cancer patients will face losing their crowning glory, their hair, to the very treatment designed to cure them – a cruel irony that many patients struggle to come to terms with and which can deeply affect their self-esteem. Did you know that self-esteem plays an integral role in the success of cancer treatment? Yes, a woman’s ability to feel great about herself is a huge leap forward on what can be a long road to
Chemotherapy and Alopecia patients can experience total hair loss, including eyebrows and eyelashes. Though there are alternatives to hair loss, such as wigs, which can help a client feel like their old self again, there is another answer in regards to facial hair loss – permanent
makeup. Permanent makeup consists of a method which delivers tiny color particles beneath the client’s skin and can be used before undergoing chemotherapy or radiation. The procedure can be completed in as little as an hour and recreates the illusion of eyebrows and eyelashes, eliminating the clients need to continually reapply their make-up and allowing them the freedom to spend more time focusing on their recovery.
Through permanent makeup, women have the ability to ease the distress of chemotherapy by preserving the appearance of their eyebrows and eyelashes. Women can feel confident with natural looking eyebrows and beautifully defined eyes with this long lasting and simple
solution. Permanent makeup can be applied one month before the client undergoes cancer drug administration; this time frame allows the client’s original facial hair, which is still in place, to be enhanced with natural looking micro-pigments. The client can enter into treatment feeling beautiful and having one less thing to worry about.
For those patients already undergoing chemotherapy treatment, permanent makeup can be applied in the midst of treatment, if approved by a physician. The procedure can be performed during an off-week when no chemotherapy drugs are being administered. No matter where you are in terms of your treatment, there is an option available to you that will assist you in looking your best.
Chemo and Hair Loss Facts…
Chemotherapy is a treatment designed to significantly restrict the growth of cells. The treatment also affects the constantly growing hair follicles; because the cells which are found in the hair root and scalp are affected, the growth begins to slow down and eventually comes to a halt. In addition, the patient’s hair follicles become weaker and are no longer able to support the existing hair strands, causing them to break or fall off completely.
Because the scalp is fed by a complex network of fine blood vessels, a high concentration of the chemotherapy drug is delivered to each hair follicle. Some patients will experience hair loss within 7 – 10 days of their first treatment, with the hair from the crown and sides of the
head being lost first. The most severe loss occurs 1 -2 months after treatment as begun. Once the entire chemotherapy drug treatment plan has been completed, patients notice regrowth of hair within 4 -6 weeks. Once hair begins to grow, it is not uncommon to notice some changes.
65% of chemotherapy hair loss sufferers have experienced a change in their hair texture and/or color. The above statistic is broken down further as follows: Approximately 33% of patients will experience a change in color; 40% will experience a change in hair texture; and 50% will
experience will experience a change in hair type when regrowth takes place.
Hair After Chemo…
Patients who have undergone chemotherapy treatment will experience a hair regrowth rate of just over a centimeter per month. Hair that is newly grown after treatment is fragile – finer and weaker than hair that has been growing for a long period of time. Most patients will notice that
their hair will return to its full thickness and strength after 6 months from their final treatment. During the 6 month period after treatment ceases, it is important not to “stress” new hair growth – patients are advised to refrain from subjecting their hair to permanent or semi-permanent hair dyes during this time. Because dye absorption ability may also be altered in newly grown hair, it is essential to perform a strand test when tinting new hair to see how it will react. During these early months of regrowth, vegetable dyes and non-permanent hair colors offer an easy and safe solution that is gentler on hair that is in a fragile state.
During this difficult time, it is vital for patients to feel supported in every area. Patients should be encouraged to turn to their hairdresser in helping them make the right decisions in how to properly deal with the consequences of their treatment.
You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. ~Eleanor Roosevelt
To learn more about the permanent makeup techniques and services performed by Sarah Oliver, specifically for cancer and alopecia patients, or to schedule a consultation session, please visit: http://www.natural-you.com/services/oncology-esthetics/