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Chemo 'hamper'(25 Posts)
Sorry if anyone can answer this from personal experience
I am trying to put together a 'hamper' to help someone starting chemo. I have thought about:
* lip salve
* Sea bands
* boiled sweets
* E45 cream?
* a turban?
Can anyone suggest nice things to include? Many thanks.
A blanket as my mum feels cold having hers maybe some slippers, a book or magazine to read
Vit E oil for nails
A sign that says "fuck off, I feel like shit"
Just please be there for them, it's amazing how friends disappear like snow in June when the shits and giggles are over and life gets real.
If they will lose their hair, maybe some silk scarves, if your budget allows?
A thermal mug, gift card for Costa/Starbucks/M&S/WHSmith (check what is local to their hospital, or even in it and then they can treat themselves without worrying about the cost), a pashmina/wrap thing to keep cosy, luxe warm socks.
But also, don't forget that chemo goes on for a long time - often people do lots for the start,, and then the support tails off, and going to the hospital gets really old. So if you can pop something round like a mag, lovely hand cream or just a text when they are going, it really helps
Well it's my mother, TheGonnagle, I'd be hard pressed to disappear
and she knows where I live
I am noting these all down, thanks so much. I am wondering about a cashmere blanket because she does feel the cold.
A voucher for something like a nice afternoon tea she can look forward to and do on one of her feeling well days
A weekly / monthly subscription to a magazine or puzzle books if she enjoys them
Bamboo yarn cap, really beautifully soft.
Also, the week after their chemo, easy to eat food, all prepared. When the chemo kicked in my DSis was ever so grateful for the prepared food that our cousins brought around for her.
A nice water jug and glass so that your friend can have water to hand at all times. If you drink loads of water you feel less grim.
Ginger biscuits good for sickness
Loads of good handcream (possibly not too scented as this sometimes makes you feel nauseous). When/if her nails go manky, some nail lacquer is good - even for someone who doesn't usually do their nails)
DVDs/magazines etc (nothing too highbrow in the week after chemo)
Writing from chemo experience!
I'm sorry, I didn't mean to be rude, it was from the heart and I suppose, a little bitter (thinking of my own experiences). I think it's a lovely thing you're doing for your mum, she's lucky to have you there for her.
on a more practical note, I should have said that chemo has given me the most ridiculously sensitive nose, all sorts of smells give me a thumping headache, but particularly synthetic fragrance, so try and buy unscented stuff like body cream etc.
I hope your mum is feeling better and fighting fit soon
I had issues with smells too. And I'm a real product junkie so lots of people bought me scented goodies.
I did develop a passion for mini milk lollies that has never left me, but any ice lolly was most welcome.
Also, puzzle books -for me it was sudoku -quite often that's all I could manage, even a trashy mag was too taxing.
I found I went hot to cold to hot quite quickly. Does she get cold hands? What about some nice wrist warmers?
Wishing you both well.
Thank you all She starts the tablets with radiotherapy shortly, then surgery at Christmas, lovely. Fingers crossed for her and all of you going through this.
RE food for after chemo, can I just note that what my mum really appreciated were ready made toddler meals. She knew she needed to eat, wasn't really ever hungry and definitely didn't want strong tastes and flavours. M&S did some fabbo toddler meals - small portions, simple/traditional foods, good quality. A tiny portion of shepherds pie or something would be just what was needed. We would stock up the fridge with these periodically.
Don't know how old yr mum is and whether she has a kindle or tablet but i bought my mum one before chemo as a Christmas and birthday present combined (she was a bit resistant as she thoght it was too expensive/she'd never get the hang of it etc) and she loved it - said it really helped her through. She would load up with a mixture of books/newspapers /magazines and sit happily for hours. Also useful to have a newspaper app for days when you want to stay in bed.
Radiotherapy involves a lot of hanging around, and the going to the hospital every day is very tiring and draining. Many people find it very hard to sit in the waiting room and see people with advanced cancer, so things that help pass the time really help distract.
OP - if your DM is taking Capecitibine tablets as oral chemo, she may not have bad side effects - but good unscented hand and foot creams (hospitals often recommend Udderly or MooGoo which you can purchase online) are essential as well as a good lip salve. And, as I mentioned before, drinking loads of water really helps, so a jug for home and a bottle for the handbag is useful.
Thank you everyone I have a good haul now. I am going for a few of the Cook teeny tiny meals SonorousBlip, she has a tiny appetite at the best of times.
What about a water face spray? Agree that soft blankets are a good idea - it's enormously comforting to touch soft things when you're feeling puky. My grandmother used to like barley sugar to suck to keep the sickness at bay but I appreciate this is totally individual so may not be any good.
one of those music shuffle thing with her fav tunes on it my sis did that for mum and dad they both have cancer.Asoft baby toothbrush as it is common to get ulcers.A nice book to read and something treatwise as it is not all about cancer your mum is still a woman.i know you cant put it in a hamper but frozen pineapple is refreshing to suck on if her mouth gets sore.oh and a lovely nightie/dressing in case of hosp stays.Best wishes to you and your Mum xx
I can, unfortunately from personal experience.
* a hand held fan
* fake tan
* a decent eye brow wax/ pencil
* night time hat to keep head warm
* voucher for iBooks or actual books depending on how they actually enjoy reading
The moogoo creams are great - my hands and feet got very dry.
Kindle, magazine subscription - chemo is dull!
Not sure about the silk scarf idea - might well slip off.
Just read a comment about friends disappearing. I know in your case is different as it's your mum but my god I'd this comment true.
I was diagnosed just before I turned 18 so mainly had my long 9 months of treatments throughout being 18. The amount of friends that appeared to have disappeared overnight was unreal. Some people only even spoke to me out of nosiness (getting in touch randomly after not speaking for years to ask 'what you been up to lately?')
On the contrary I also had this one 'friend' and her
pain in the arse overbearing mother, who would just turn up unaccounted and talk and talk AND TALK AND TALK and not leave! Argh! It was even worse as I felt that they were only there for the 'glory', and to talk endlessly about themselves. Eurgh.
Do be weary of people, for your mothers sake. Only allow visitors if she WANTS visitors, and tell them not to stay for long. Don't be afraid to tell them when to leave too. Don't allow anyone who shows up without pre arranging to come in either. I can't tell you how anti social your mum will feel and if she was anything like me, just want to sit and watch tv all day whilst eating endless
hotdogs pieces of fruit.
I wanted to add: a very good water bottle, perhaps like the Boden ones with the filter built in? I find mine invaluable as I am permanently thirsty so this lives in my bag (Speaking from experience....last Chemo session next week!).
Some lovely bath oils or bubbles....I have quite a few hot baths in the days immediately after my Chemo, it seems the only way to warm up and eases the aching joints.
I also think some lovely pajamas or lounge wear (Very soft & comfortable) for the days where she feels really horrible and stays in bed, she can put these on after her bath.
I agree that a silk scarf will slide off <briteside eyes her beautiful silk scarf with longing> but some cotton scarfs would be handy!
And lastly, some nicely scented alcohol hand cleanser: She will need to be careful of germs as her immune system gets weaker.
Good luck to your mom. Chemo is do-able. Tough. Very Tough. But do-able!!
I didn't get alerts that there had been more posts, sorry anyone if you thought I was ignoring your helpful advice
I gave her a hamper full of all your suggestions and it went down pretty well. The travel bands, water bottle with filter and fancy lip balm especially She's finding the chemo/radio tough, but that's only to be expected no doubt.
Good luck to all of you still going through it
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