Many of our customers fighting breast cancer report using the BedFan to help relieve persistent night sweats. Both night sweats and hot flashes are common in cancer survivors and patients alike. They are generally brought on by medications, surgeries, or radiation therapy. Unfortunately, night sweats can be pretty troublesome, causing a lack of sleep, pain, and a decline in mental health in breast cancer patients.
What is breast cancer?
Breast cancer occurs when cells within the breast tissue grow in an out-of-control manner. It can cause various changes to the patient's breasts, which are usually the first signs that something is amiss. Lumps in the breast or armpit, irritation of the skin, a pulling in of the nipple, nipple discharge (including blood), and redness or flaky skin in any area of the breast can all be signs of breast cancer.
What are the treatments for breast cancer?
Breast cancer can be treated in several different ways:
- Surgery can be performed on the affected breast or breasts to remove the cancerous tissues.
- Chemotherapy can also be used to kill or shrink cancer cells through either a pill or medicine injected directly into the bloodstream.
- Hormonal therapy blocks cancer cells from growing by depriving them of the hormone that helps them grow.
- Radiation therapy kills cancer cells through the use of high-energy rays.
- Biological therapy helps the body's immune system fight off cancer or control the side effects of treatment.
What treatments can cause night sweats as a side effect?
Night sweats most often occur in women when they enter menopause, but radiation and chemotherapy can put the body in a medically induced menopausal state, thus causing night sweats. In addition, hormone therapy medications like tamoxifen and aromatase inhibitors are prescribed five years after surgery to remove cancerous breast tissue and occasionally to follow radiation or chemotherapy. These medications lower the amount of estrogen in the body, which also puts the body in a state similar to menopause, causing night sweats.
How can night sweats be minimized?
Luckily, there are many ways to help reduce the severity of night sweats due to breast cancer treatment. First, it's essential to stay hydrated when dealing with night sweats, as the body loses a lot of water due to sweating. Drinking a cool glass of water can take care of hydration and also provide relief from the overheating. Keeping a glass of cold water on your bedside table is a good move if you're having bad night sweats. You should also monitor whether or not your night sweats are influenced by what you eat or drink. Alcohol, caffeine, and spicy foods can worsen night sweats for some people. If you notice that correlation, it would be wise to avoid those triggers.
It would also help if you also made changes to your bedroom situation to help provide relief from night sweats. For example, having a quilt or light comforter on your bed instead of a heavier comforter can make a world of difference. Light, breathable clothing can also help keep your body cool. Keeping your room cool is also very important, although it can get expensive when using air conditioning, especially during the summer. This is where the BedFan comes in, as it's an affordable option to cool the body down when night sweats are flaring up.