When people hear the word “chemotherapy,” hair loss is one of the first concerns that comes to mind. For many, hair loss is an integral and dreaded component of the treatment to fight cancer.
The hair on our heads is important beyond its basic functions of protecting the scalp and regulating body temperature. Hair symbolizes physical strength, vitality, and virility. Physical attractiveness can be closely linked with hair. Hair that flows signifies health and freedom.
What happens when all of your hair falls out during cancer treatment? How do you deal with this loss, which is a sign to yourself and to the world that you are ill.
In today’s episode, I talk with Rory Green —writer, psychotherapist, workshop leader—who in 2015 was treated for breast cancer. Together we explore our experiences in dealing with hair loss and the changes in self-perception that accompany cancer treatment, as well as the period post treatment when your hair begins to grow back.