Category Archives: Itching

Laugh 'til it Heals

Christine K. Clifford

comes up with

another winner


Never one to miss a good opportunity to laugh whilst having cancer treatment, Christine Clifford believes in a certain Dr. Siegel, who said,

“show me a patient who is able to laugh and play… and I will show you someone who is going to live longer”.

And throughout her new book she comes up with one-liners, two-liners and lots-of-liners that make you laugh out loud, from

Shouldn’t they call it a HERSterectomy?

to one that pokes gentle fun at doctors who consider themselves superior beings, via a description of The Pope:

His Holiness is at the Pearly Gates, not best pleased at having to wait in line.  He sees a man with a stethoscope walk to the head of the queue, and to his astonishment he is let in before everyone else.

He demands to know why the Guardian Angel allows doctors in before him.

The Angel answers, “that was no doctor.  That was God.  He just liked to pretend he is a doctor”.

And whenever you come across one of those pompous beings, I can promise you you will remember Christine’s story – and smile.

Or there was the woman who woke up and thought she was dead.  Why?  Because nothing hurts.  (We can all smile at that).  Or I let out a loud laugh when I read about the woman who insisted she wanted Whoopee cushions placed on the pews at her funeral.

Laughing all the way – that’s the best medicine.

Laugh ’til it Heals  by Christine K. Clifford





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Expert advice before you scratch

Cancer Research UK
Image via Wikipedia

CancerHelp UK

the patient information site of Cancer Research UK, has useful tips on coping with itching.

The following is an extract from some of the information on their website:

  • Limit the number of baths/showers you take – use lukewarm water and very little or no soap
  • Instead of soap, use a moisturising liquid (see Body Skin category for good makes of body cleanser)
  • Pat your skin dry with a towel rather than rubbing- or use a bath robe – but don’t forget to dry your feet!
  • Drying the skin thoroughly reduces the chance of chaffing and fungal infection
  • Moisturise your skin straight after you bathe
  • Wear cotton and linen, rather than wool or man made materials which can irritate the skin (If you must have wool, cashmere is less likely to irritate – of course, it would be the most expensive!)
  • Keep your bedclothes light
  • Try to keep an even, cool temperature in your room, as getting hot can make itching worse
  • Drink plenty of fluids – preferably water (2 to 3 litres a day)
  • Keep your nails short to reduce the risk of scratching your skin

They do say avoid scented lotions, but as Lavender and Rose were used as antiseptics, if you want to smell nice, make sure that any product you use uses the best oils – not harsh chemical scents.

And these are really helpful tips on what to do when you want to scratch:

  • It can sometimes help to gently pinch an area of skin close to the itch
  • Rub, tap or press the area
  • Put a cool pack on the skin
  • Gently apply more moisturiser

If all else fails on a hot night – I used to run a lukewarm bath, put in some good bath milk – the sort that moisturises your skin – and soak until the itching had disappeared.  Then get out, wrap myself in a bath towel or robe until I was dry, and by then usually the itch had disappeared.

I then used a light but good body moisturiser all over, as so often itching was caused by dry, dry skin – so keeping it moist and healthy helped get rid of much of the itching.

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