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Home Treatment

Home treatment can help you manage any side effects that your treatment might cause. If your doctor gives you instructions or medicines to treat these side effects, be sure to follow them. In general, healthy habits such as eating a balanced diet and getting enough sleep and exercise may help control your symptoms.

  • Home treatment for nausea or vomiting includes watching for and treating early signs of dehydration, such as having a dry mouth or feeling lightheaded when you stand up. Eating smaller meals may help. So can a little bit of ginger candy or ginger tea.
  • Home treatment for diarrhea includes resting your stomach and watching for signs of dehydration. Check with your doctor before using any nonprescription medicines for your diarrhea.
  • Home treatment for constipation includes gentle exercise along with getting enough fluids and having a diet that is high in fruits, vegetables, and fiber. Check with your doctor before using a laxative for your constipation.
  • Home treatment for fatigue includes making sure you get extra rest. Let your symptoms be your guide. Fatigue is often worse at the end of treatment or just after treatment is completed.
  • Home treatment for sleep problems includes going to bed at the same time every night and getting exercise during the day.
  • Home treatment for pain includes using heat and cold packs.

Stress, hair loss, and body image

  • The diagnosis of melanoma and the need for treatment can be very stressful. You may be able to reduce your stress by expressing your feelings to others. Learning relaxation techniques may also help reduce your stress.
  • Hair loss can be emotionally distressing. Not all chemotherapy medicines cause hair loss. And some people have only mild thinning that is noticeable only to them. Talk to your doctor about whether hair loss is an expected side effect with the medicines you will receive.
  • Your feelings about your body may change following a diagnosis of melanoma and the need for treatment. Adapt to your body-image changes by talking openly about your concerns with your partner and discussing your feelings with your doctor. Your doctor may also be able to refer you to groups that can offer more support and information.

Having cancer can change your life in many ways. For help in managing these changes, see the topic Getting Support When You Have Cancer.

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: July 29, 2013
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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