Gift Ideas For Someone Going Through Radiation Therapy

Today I’m going to be sharing with you some great gift ideas for giving to somebody that’s going through radiation therapy. If you’re new here to this channel welcome to Life as a Cancer Survivor. My name is Jelena and I was diagnosed with Stage 3 Rectal Cancer in May of 2016. Radiation and oral chemotherapy were the first steps in my treatment, and I’ve talked about going through each of those in my last two videos. If you happen to have missed those, I’ll have the link above here to the playlist where you can find both of those videos. I’ll talk in future videos about great gift ideas both for someone that’s going into surgery and is gonna have a hospital stay and also for somebody that’s going through an ileostomy reversal so make sure you’re subscribed to my channel so you’ll get notifications when those videos are live. And now for the fun stuff, the gifts!

The first really helpful gifts that I got were shorts and tank tops. Theshorts were especially great because I could easily pull them down to my knees for treatment and then quickly get them back up when it was done. They weren’t super tight-fitting as you can see so they easily slid up and down and they weren’t even tight like in the butt or anything so when you start getting burned they’re not aggravated by tight pants. And were quickly and easily removed when that radiation diarrhea starts setting in. I went through treatment in the summer so the tank tops are nice and flowy and comfortable and they’re perfect for going from radiation treatment straight to bed for those midday naps. For cooler weather, pants like these are similar to the shorts in that the waistband, nice and comfy, not too tight, and they easily transition from radiation to nap.

For the rest of the gift ideas, and actually, for those pants, I’ve got links to all of them in the description below so check that out. I think I’m also supposed to tell you that those links lead you to my Amazon affiliate account so if you click on those and you happen to buy anything I will get a small commission off of the purchase price of those items. I’ll let you know in the description below if it’s a product that I used and highly recommended, a friend used and highly recommended, or I just got the recommendation of an item and so I chose one based on what they recommended. Now back to what you’re really here for, the gift ideas!

I got a care package about halfway through my treatment from a group of high school Box full of giftsfriends and in that I got this cute little USB Drive loaded with music. The music was separated into five different playlists: rest, rollick, rumble, remember, and relax. It was a good combination of music to pump me up on my rides to and from radiation every day and also to help me calm and relax and just stop thinking about cancer for a little bit. And since it was music picked out by my friends it was a lot of stuff that I really liked but didn’t have so it mixed up my playlists.

There was also this hilarious book that I should have read on those days when I was too tired or hurt too much to get up and do anything but I mistakenly waited and took it with me while I was there for surgery for my hospital stay and I’ll tell you why it was not a good idea just for this kind of book for surgery time, at least for me in that video about gift ideas for surgery.

There were also animal crackers in there which were nice easy to grab snacks that were also really gentle on the tummy when it was in turmoil from radiation. Then last but certainly not least was a gift card that was good to use at multiple restaurants around town. That was really handy once the hand and foot syndrome started kicking in and it’s painful just stand on your feet let alone try to cook. Plus your caregiver is getting exhausted by then as well.

To help soothe the area that’s being radiated before burns really start setting in, fellow survivor friends recommended either Aquaphor or calendula cream. One friend suggested unscented lotion, another scented lotion, either one lotion is an excellent gift idea. When someone goes through radiation treatments their white blood cell counts drop which means you’re more susceptible to getting sick and if you do get sick it’s much worse than if a normal healthy person gets ill. That means lots of handwashing which dries your hands out really bad, so that lotion is very helpful to help soothe those dry hands. And if the person is taking the oral chemotherapy Xeloda, that means they’re more susceptible to getting Hand-Foot Syndrome, so lathering your hands and the bottoms of your feet and lotion can help delay the onset of Hand-Foot Syndrome.

Next up is a bidet. There are cheap versions that are just a nozzle or a sprayer that you attach to your toilet. Those are about twenty or thirty dollars. Or if you’re a really generous friend, you can give them a bidet that’s got a heated seat and even a butt dryer for $300+. This is not just a short-term gift either. If they’re going through pelvic radiation they’re gonna get burns. Any rubbing is gonna irritate them and the water from the bidet feels much better on the tush. If they’re going to have a temporary ileostomy that bidet will be a lifesaver after they go through their reversal surgery and I’ll talk about that in a future video.

Another great gift is maid service. As radiation treatment wears on the fatigue starts to set in more and more and cleaning the house is kind of put on the back burner. Having a maid service gives that person a nice clean house to look at while they’re just laying around the couch because they’re too tired or hurt too much to get up and do anything. Plus their immune system is gonna be taking a hit during treatment so at a minimum having a clean bathroom is really gonna be helpful for them.

Gift certificates for a manicure or a pedicure are great too. It’s a greatway to get pampered for a little bit and the results can be seen for days maybe even weeks after. Even when you haven’t showered in days and you feel like a disaster, having some nicely polished nails can help be a little bright spot in someone’s day. Or if nails aren’t really their thing other fellow survivors also suggested scalp massage or reflexology session. The reflexology was recommended by a fellow survivor to help with calming your nerves and anxiety which you’re gonna have some if you have cancer.

I got many other great suggestions from fellow survivors too. Comfort items like fuzzy socks which I got these fuzzy socks for surgery or a blanket. Things to do when they’re too tired or hurt too much to get up and do anything like puzzles or good books. And to help with that radiation-induced diarrhea a box of Imodium. Just a card tora let them know that you’re thinking of them too is always appreciated.

Of course, each person is different but these are some of the top gifts that any person going through radiation would love to receive. I hope that this list has helped you figure out a great gift to give. Next week’s video is gonna be a true cancer vlog where I take you along with me on the adventures of getting a CT scan because it’s that time of year so I want to bring you along with me for it. If you need to catch up on any of my earlier videos the playlist for the beginning of my cancer journey is right up here. My face is down here for you to click on and subscribe. So, I want to thank you guys for watching and I’ll see you next week.

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🎁Links to the gift ideas I suggest in this post:

👖Pants that I have and highly recommend:

💾Minion USB drive that I got:

📘Book I received that was hilarious:

🐪Animal crackers I received:

👍Aquaphor cream highly recommended by a fellow survivor:

👍Calendula cream was highly recommended by a fellow survivor, this one is highly rated: 🚽Budget version of a bidet that is highly rated & a best seller: 🚽Fancy bidet that I’ve used at a doctor’s office and was FANTASTIC:

🦶Fuzzy slipper socks I have and highly recommend:

💙Cozy blanket I have and highly recommend: 💊Last but not least, Imodium! I’ve used the brand name stuff here:, but usually buy a generic brand at the grocery store.

*This video was originally published on December 11, 2019

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