August 5th, 2023 | Cancer
Your Ally in the Fight against Cancer
Importance and Strategies for Hydration During Chemotherapy
When you’re going through cancer treatment, staying hydrated becomes more important than ever. It may sound as simple as adding two and two together, but in practice, it may not be as easy as it seems. In fact, sometimes, you might be dehydrated and have no clue whatsoever!
For that reason, you must keep yourself all dewy on the inside (and out!), as it benefits your general well-being, including your condition. To ensure proper hydration during chemotherapy, here are a few pointers you need to pay attention to. Grab your water, and let’s jump right into it!
First and foremost, let’s understand what dehydration in cancer patients is. Simply put, it occurs when your body loses more fluids than it takes in. As a result, during treatment, various factors can contribute to dehydration. Unfortunately, chemotherapy and radiation therapy can cause unwanted side effects. To name a few, fever, vomiting, diarrhea, or excessive urination can lead to fluid loss. Conclusively, medication side effects can get even more frequent if you don’t consume enough fluids or are exposed to excessive heat.
So, why is hydration during chemotherapy important? Proper hydration plays a vital role in supporting your body’s functions. In fact, fluids carry essential nutrients to your cell – they flush out bacteria from your bladder and help prevent constipation.
When you drink enough water, you can minimize the severity of cancer treatment side effects. Moreover, it can help you avoid trips to the emergency room for IV hydration after chemo, providing more comfort and control during the challenging journey.
Signs of dehydration
It’s well-known that chemo and dehydration are the perfect dance partners, and it’s up to you to set them apart. After all, it’s not the most gracious dance! Let’s take a closer look at the signs of dehydration to watch out for during cancer treatment:
- Feeling unusually thirsty
- Dry mouth, lips, gums, and nostrils
- Increased headaches, dizziness, confusion, sleepiness
- Decreased energy
- Darker urine color
- Decreased urination
- Lower skin elasticity
- Low blood pressure
- Increased temperature
If you’re facing dehydration during chemo and notice any of these symptoms, it’s a sign you need to immediately address them and consult with your healthcare team for guidance and support. This way, you make sure to prevent the possibility of complications. But before jumping to a grave conclusion, take a sip of water – you’d be surprised by the difference it makes!
What to do when dehydrated
If you’re able to drink fluids orally, gradually increase your fluid intake and keep track of what you’re drinking. It’s highly recommended to have a variety of fluid sources on hand to cater to your changing preferences.
Naturally, the best choice for hydration during chemotherapy is water. But if you find it challenging to drink plain water, you can try flavored twists, fruit-infused water, or other beverages like milk, sports drinks, tea, coffee, smoothie – the list goes on and on! You may be surprised to learn that moist foods such as soup, jello, yogurt, sherbet, and pudding are also excellent for hydration. Furthermore, your skin needs some loving too! Make sure to moisturize daily, especially the parts of the skin that are frequently exposed, like your face and hands.
Consult with your healthcare team or a registered dietitian to determine the appropriate fluid intake for your specific situation.
We understand the importance of hydration during chemotherapy. That’s why we developed a solution that we offer in the Queasy Products Line. When you’re dehydrated, nausea and vomiting can become a common occurrence. To keep them at bay, pop one of our Queasy Drops or put on the Queasy wristband, helping alleviate the symptoms through acupressure. Read more on our blog about nausea-related issues and causes, or go to the online store and order and try our bestselling products yourself!