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A Guide for Women Who Are Experiencing Hair Loss

Posted: Tuesday, December 3rd, 2013

Throughout history, a full head of lustrous hair has always represented femininity and in some cultures, even fertility. But when a woman begins to lose her hair due to factors she cannot control, it signifies a loss not just of hair, but also of her identity, her dignity, and even her sense of self.

For recently diagnosed cancer patients, the first sign of hair loss symbolizes even more. It tells them, “This is real. I really do have cancer.” Part of the female cancer patient’s journey is to decide what to do about her hair loss. Some embrace the “bald is beautiful” approach while others wear headscarves. But most women choose wigs because in their words, they want to feel like themselves. When a woman is gearing up for treatment, the last thing she wants to deal with is hair loss. She wants to maintain her dignity during this most difficult time in her life.

The hair replacement specialists here at The Salon at 10 Newbury are hair professionals who have taken that extra step in their training to learn the art of wig shaping and fitting. Even though no two people have the same face or the same size head, the larger percentage of wigs are mass-produced. It is up to a professional to customize the wig to the head of the individual patient so that she can go seamlessly from her ‘old’ hair to her ‘new’ hair. The only comment friends, family and colleagues will make is, “I love your hair!”

Hair replacement specialists are the latest addition to complementary cancer care; working alongside acupuncturists, massage therapists, and other adjunct professionals to add a different dimension of healing to a cancer patient’s journey. For cancer patients, choosing the right wig is not about making a fashion statement; it is about finding the ability to live with dignity and normalcy in the face of a life-threatening illness. It is about letting women decide when and if they share their private cancer experience with the world. It is about letting women define themselves—and not letting the cancer define them.

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