People living with cancer have poor immunity because the immune system is weakened by cancer treatment as well as the cancer disease. These people are therefore susceptible to infections that come their way. Nevertheless, there are some measures that patients can put in place to avoid infections from viruses or even germs.
These measures include;
This involves keeping high level of cleanliness at home, workplace and when in public. Washing hands is one of the primary actions that should be observed by these patients. After visiting the toilet, the patient should wash his/her hands with warm soapy water to avoid transferring germs to the mouth. Also, patients should wash hands after sneezing, coughing, handling animals, collecting trash as well as after touching things that are contacted by other people like door handles and other public items that can lead to the patient acquiring germs. Bathing daily is also essential as it takes off germs that the body might have collected throughout the day. During bathing, keen attention is paid to sweaty areas as well as the anal area to prevent the growth of bacteria that can cause diseases. Cancer patients must consider using alcohol-based wipes in places where they cannot access water to wash their hands. Also, they should avoid sharing their items including makeup, utensils, and clothes as they can collect germs from other people rendering them exposed to bacteria that can cause diseases.
Medication to Prevent Infections
The immunity of a patient mostly depends on the stage of his/her cancer. Patients in advanced stages have their immunity lowered to a level that observing hygiene and other non-medicinal measures cannot help because their immunity needs to be boosted. In this case, there are some preventative drugs mostly antibiotics that work as prophylaxis hence preventing infections. These drugs can be antifungal, antibacterial as well as antivirus. Some drugs such as steroids weaken body immunity, and they are usually given with antibiotics aiming at preventing infections. These drugs are given when the immunity is compromised and are stopped when the immune system is no longer so weak. Nevertheless, these drugs do not entirely prevent patients from infections. Therefore, they should pay keen attention to any sign of infection and report to their doctors as soon as possible to maintain a stable immune system. There are also some growth factor drugs that are protein in nature that enhance the growth of blood cells boosting the immunity of a patient.
Eating Well Balanced Diets
Although, fruits and vegetables have vital vitamins and mineral salts that are required by our bodies, many doctors advise cancer patients not to take them due to germs that they can transfer to their bodies if they are not washed thoroughly. However, if they are cleaned well, patients can consume them to acquire vitamins that the body needs to fight diseases. Precut and canned fruits should be avoided as during the handling and packing process they might be contaminated. Foods from soft server machines like yogurt and ice cream should also be avoided. It is crucial that patients should include their doctors in their dietary nutrition issues to advise them on which food to eat and which ones to avoid. Also, patients are encouraged to take a lot of fluids especially water to prevent constipation that can lead to the destruction of the mucosal layer of the anal canal which can be a perfect entry of germs to the body.
To summarize, good hygiene reduces the chances of patients getting infections from their environment hence improving life.