Four Ways To Make Your First Chemo Infusion Experience More Comfortable

Posted on: 29 May 2017

Chemo infusions are a necessary evil when it comes to treating many forms of cancer. Headed into your first chemo treatment, you're sure to feel a bit nervous and worried. The appointment is often several hours long, and although most patients don't feel too under the weather during the chemo (the nausea comes later), you're likely to feel bored, chilly, and nervous throughout. Thankfully, there are plenty of ways you can make your first chemo infusion experience more comfortable.

Bring a supportive family member.

You'll need someone to drive you home after the appointment, but it's a good idea to have a relative or a good friend remain with you for the duration of the treatment, too. Think long and hard about who you choose. You want someone who is going to be upbeat and cheerful in order to keep you in a good mood throughout the chemo infusion. Friends who tend to be overly emotional may just make you more nervous and may therefore not be your best choice of company at this time.

Bring along your own music.

There's often music playing through the speakers in the treatment center, but chances are, it won't be your favorite genre or band. So, bring your own music. Take the time to make a playlist on your phone, or treat yourself to a new music app. If you're not overly into music, you can download some interesting podcasts to listen to during the treatment instead.

Dress in layers. 

Hospitals can be chilly, and sometimes the cooler temperature of the IV fluid you're given can lower your body temperature and make you even chillier. Other times, you may feel a bit warm because you're worried or nervous. So, to make comfort easier to come by, dress in layers. This way, you can peel your top layer off if you're too hot, and put it back on if you're chilly again. Many patients even like to bring their own blankets; they're comfortable to snuggle up in if you get chilly.

Ask your questions first.

If you have any questions about your chemo infusion and what the process will be like, ask your doctor now! This way, you won't be left wondering and worrying throughout your appointment. Most doctors and nurses will be more than happy to answer your questions and address any concerns you have. Knowing just what to expect will make the chemo infusion process less nerve-wracking.

Talk to a center such as Idaho Arthritis Center for more information.