Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Looking better helps cancer patients feel better

(ARA) - For Nancy Lumb, one of the hardest parts of having cancer was dealing with the appearance-related side effects of treatment.

"I never cried when I was told I had breast cancer or had to tell my mother and husband," says Lumb. "I only cried when I started to lose my hair. Cancer has a way of robbing you of your femininity."

Enhancing a woman's self-confidence,by giving her the support and tools she needs to manage her changing appearance during cancer treatment provides renewed hope. It gives her the strength she needs to face her treatment and recovery with greater confidence. When women look better, they feel better.

A survey by Look Good…Feel Better -- a national public service program that helps women cope with the appearance-related changes of cancer treatment -- and Harris Interactive found that 86 percent of women in treatment credit looking better with feeling better.

"Now we want women to inspire others by sharing their stories," says Louanne Roark, executive director of Look Good…Feel Better. "We know our workshops have had a tremendous impact on women around the country, and we want to share those encouraging stories with other women.”

The organization, which has helped 650,000 women since it began 20 years ago, is launching a national search to find five women who have been touched by cancer and want to share their stories as a way to help others. These women will be honored as the Women of Hope is Beautiful.

Women affected by cancer can visit www.lookgoodfeelbetter.org to submit their stories of hope, strength and determination. The organization is encouraging entries -- such as essays, poems, pictures, or videos -- that share a personal story of coping with cancer and the impact of the Look Good…Feel Better program. The five women selected will receive a trip to New York and a complimentary makeover. They will also be honored at the organization's annual black-tie gala.

As Lumb explains, "I discovered that I can look as good as I did before I got sick, maybe even better." To read more about her experience or share your own inspiring story, visit www.lookgoodfeelbetter.org.

Look Good…Feel Better is a collaboration between the Personal Care Products Council Foundation, the American Cancer Society and the National Cosmetology Association., and is dedicated to improving the lives of women, men and teens undergoing cancer treatment by offering advice on how to cope with the appearance-related side effects of chemotherapy, radiation and other forms of treatment.

Courtesy of ARAcontent

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