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How is chemotherapy going?
For those of you who don’t know me, my name is Jessica, and I am part of the Mother Earth Natural Health team. I work behind the scenes mostly, so I am rarely at the stores to see all the smiling faces. In November of 2021, I was diagnosed with breast cancer at 31 years old. Specifically, I was diagnosed with Invasive Ductal Carcinoma. I started chemotherapy in January of 2022, and I am officially halfway done with only 8 or 16 treatments left to go!
I started with four treatments of AC (Adriamycin and Cytoxin) once every two weeks, which, according to Living Beyond Breast Cancer, is a common regimen given for breast cancer. AC is also called the “Red Devil'' because it takes your hair away. I’m going to be honest and say AC was terrible, and I’m so glad it’s over. Currently, I’m on a treatment called Taxol and Carboplatin, which I receive once per week for 12 weeks. I have now had 4 treatments of Taxol and Carboplatin with chemotherapy, and I’m already feeling so much better.
Patients experience so many different side effects of chemotherapy, all in their own way. What one person may experience, another may not. Cancer is very different from person to person, as is its treatment. In this blog post, I’ll talk about what I’ve learned so far, and what is helping me get through chemotherapy.
What have I learned so far?
I’m learning a lot as I go through this journey. For instance, everyone experiences things differently. Some patients have mild side effects from chemo, while others find it difficult to do anything at all. I also learned that treatment is different for everyone depending on their type and stage of cancer. Some people will go through AC first, then Taxol, while others will only go through Taxol and not have AC, or some variation of that. I joined an online support group and learning about other patients’ experiences is what helped prepare me most.
I also learned that hair loss is a side effect of chemotherapy when I always thought it was from cancer itself. I was shocked at how quickly I lost my hair, only 15 days into treatment! I didn’t think about losing hair on other parts of my body, but it’s pretty much all gone. I didn’t realize how important nose hairs are, and now I miss them. However, I’m as smooth as a baby and I’m loving every minute of it!
Another fact I learned is that chemo dries you out. I can’t explain how dry my skin is, and how thirsty I am all the time. I often have to get extra hydration when getting my chemo treatment, otherwise, I will get very dehydrated in the following days. My hands are peeling so badly that I can’t use my fingerprint on my phone anymore. It’s so important to stay hydrated all the time, especially throughout chemo to help get the harsh chemicals out of your system.
Bone pain is something else I experienced. When I was getting AC, they would give me an on-body injector to help increase my red blood cells in the days following treatment. This injector, called Neulasta, causes bone pain which was a very new experience for me. Luckily it wasn’t that bad and has stopped since I do not get Neulasta anymore.
Chemo brain is another side effect that I often experience. Chemo brain can also be called chemo fog, or brain fog, and is described as mental cloudiness. Brain fog is something I experience already, as it is also a side effect of Multiple Sclerosis that I also have. Some days are worse than others, but I have found that certain things can help decrease brain fog.
Fatigue is another side effect of chemotherapy that I have. Fatigue is defined as extreme tiredness and exhaustion, and I get fatigued very easily now. Just walking up the stairs sometimes is a tiring and exhausting task. Fortunately, I am starting to gain my strength back and am walking more in the nice weather outside.
With all the things I have learned while going through treatment, I have also found things that help immensely. I am so happy to be working for a company that has all these different tools and options to help relieve symptoms and get me through treatment. Let’s take a look at what I’ve found that helps me get through treatment.
What CBD Products are Helping?
Although chemo is wreaking havoc on my body, I am fortunate enough to work for a company like Mother Earth Natural Health which has so many products to help. Here are some of the great products that have helped me through chemotherapy so far.
CBDistillery Focus Mushroom Capsules - I use CBDistillery Focus Mushroom capsules to help decrease my brain fog, and to help increase my immunity. Chemotherapy crushes my immunity, so it is important to do what I can to keep a strong immune system. I am unable to take certain supplements that can contraindicate my chemotherapy, but mushrooms are safe and have been so helpful. Not only do they help strengthen my immune system, but they also help improve my focus and reduce the effects of chemo brain. CBDistillery’s Focus Mushroom Capsules help me get work done throughout treatment, and they help at reducing my fatigue.
CBD Living Bath Bombs - I have made sure to practice self-care a lot during chemotherapy. Working on my healing and mindfulness has been very important to me throughout this journey. What helps me is taking calming baths with CBD bath bombs. They help me relax and unwind, and they also help with the bone pain I experience. I wish I had these on hand at all times, but I go through them quicker than I could have imagined. These are by far one of my favorite things that Mother Earth Natural Health has on its shelves.
Brothers Apothecary Renewing Face Cream - I mentioned earlier how badly chemotherapy dries you out. From the inside out, I constantly feel dry. Brothers Apothecary Renewing Face Cream helps my skin feel moisturized and has become a daily routine. This face cream is also great for the winter months when your skin is feeling extra dry and needs some love.
NutriGold Omega 3 + CoQ10 + D3 Gold - Brain fog, or chemo brain, has been one of the most difficult side effects from chemo. Mother Earth Natural Health carries a NutriGold supplement with Omega 3, CoQ10 and Vitamin D3. The omega-3 helps brain function while also supporting joint and heart health. The CoQ10 in this supplement is an important antioxidant, which is helpful in fighting free radicals (great for cancer!), and is also great for heart health. Vitamin D3 is so important in strengthening the immune system and is also great for breast health.
Brothers Apothecary Green Tea Body Butter - Chemotherapy wreaks havoc on the skin. Brothers Apothecary Green Tea Body Butter has been a skin-saver for me. It is specially crafted to hydrate skin, improve elasticity, and promote a youthful stunning complexion. Ingredients include Vitamin E, sunflower seed oil, jojoba, shea butter, and mango butter, and it’s infused with CBD for extra relief.
Farmhouse Hemp Lip Balm - Another remedy for dry skin and cracked lips is this lip balm that is infused with CBD. I love this lip balm because it helps keep my lips soft and smooth even when they want to crack from dryness.
Charlotte’s Web CBD Oil - CBD oil has been a lifesaver for me. I take Charlotte’s Web CBD Oil daily to help with my overall health. It helps with any discomfort, fatigue, and bone pain that I experience from chemo. It also helps control my anxiety right before chemotherapy, as well as my mood changes.
Huron Hemp CBD Freeze Roll-on 1500mg - As mentioned earlier, I can sometimes experience bone pain and discomfort due to chemo. Huron Hemp CBD Freeze Roll-on helps with targeted pain relief, especially from sitting on my butt too much.
Charlotte’s Web Sleep Gummies - Even though I experience constant fatigue, I still have sleep troubles occasionally. Charlotte’s Web Sleep Gummies help me fall asleep and stay asleep through the night, and they taste fantastic. The melatonin and CBD in the gummies help me get my needed rest throughout the night.
CBD Living Water - Lotion isn’t enough to keep my skin hydrated through chemotherapy, I need to ensure I drink enough water, too. I love CBD Living Water because it’s alkaline and it’s infused with 10mg of CBD per bottle. It’s a perfect way to get my much-needed hydration and a dose of CBD! I especially love taking this to my chemo treatments to keep me hydrated and feeling great throughout the rest of the day.
Chemotherapy and Mother Earth Natural Health
I am elated that I’m halfway done with chemotherapy. I am even more excited that I’ve been able to find things that have helped me get through treatment. Chemotherapy is no walk in the park, but Mother Earth Natural Health products have helped make it easier on me. Working for this company has made it easy to find these things, and I’m happy to share what has helped me so much from CBD to supplements. Stay tuned to see how the rest of the treatment is going and what else helps me through this journey. Thank you all for your support!
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