Healthy Living

Proper Skincare for Anyone Living with Cancer

How cancer treatment changes your skin

Let’s talk about what happens to your skin when you’re treating cancer. When you kill cancer cells, it can be hard to keep healthy cells alive too. Both chemotherapy and radiation kill cancer cells while affecting some healthy ones in the process. Your skin will become more sensitive because the treatments are damaging DNA.

Chemotherapy and radiation dry out the skin, making it sensitive.

Chemotherapy also affects the glands in your skin. These glands decrease oil production during treatment, which normally serves the purpose of a natural moisturizer. With less oil production, your skin gets very dry.

Radiation has been known to cause a large variety of skin reactions as well. Doctors call this radiation dermatitis. This can range from mildly irritated areas to chronic, non-healing wounds. Radiation skin reactions can be very painful.