The idea of undergoing chemotherapy for the treatment of cancer is frightening for many people. It’s hard to know what to expect because people have different reactions to the treatment. Experts say that one way to ease fears and have the best possible experience with chemotherapy is to prepare for it ahead of time. Below are some tips for preparing for chemotherapy treatment.
The older adult may not feel well enough to drive after chemotherapy. Because how they feel can be unpredictable, it’s a good idea to always have someone available to drive them to and from chemotherapy appointments. If possible, ask that person to sit with the senior during treatment as it can provide them comfort and give them something else to focus on.
An elder care provider can be scheduled to come to the older adult’s home on treatment days to help them get ready for the appointment, drive them there, keep them company, and bring them home again. The elder care provider can also stay with the senior after treatment to help them through difficult side effects.
Schedule Someone to Cook Meals
Nutrition is important for keeping the older adult as strong and healthy as possible so their body can fight cancer. However, there are likely to be times when the senior just doesn’t have the energy to cook and they may not feel like eating. Ask family members to make meals for the older adult. It can be helpful to have healthy meals in the freezer that can be warmed up as needed or have people make fresh meals at mealtimes.
Elder care providers can cook meals for the older adult or warm up frozen meals when the senior is hungry. In addition, an elder care provider can make easy to eat snacks that are appealing when the older adult is feeling nauseated or lacking an appetite because of treatment.
Plan for Comfortable Clothing
Chemotherapy treatments can take a long time, so it’s important for the older adult to be dressed comfortably for the appointment. Clothing should also offer the medical staff easy access to the senior’s central line and their upper arm, which is where the PICC will probably be. Soft, loose clothing may be best because it is comforting and can be pulled to allow access to the central line and PICC. In addition, it’s a good idea to bring a warm sweater and a soft blanket in case the older adult gets cold.
An elder care provider can help the older adult to dress before their appointment, choosing appropriate and comfortable clothing. An elder care provider can also pack a bag that includes a sweater, blanket, and other items the senior may need during treatment.