Radiation therapy or radiotherapy is a powerful cancer treatment that kills cancer cells by using radiation beams.  External beam radiation therapy which is most common uses a machine that directs high-intensity radiation beams upon cancer cells and destroys it. 

By targeting the beams at specific sites, doctors can use the therapy for the treatment of all types of cancer. Radiation therapy can be used alone or in conjunction with tumor removal surgery and chemotherapy. Killing cancer cells and shrinking tumors is the goal of the therapy, and while it will kill cancer cells, it will also damage some healthy cells, but it will recover in a short time.  Doctors direct the radiation beams to specific points with the least deviation in order to minimize the damage to healthy cells.

Preparing for radiation therapy

The doctor decides whether you would need radiation therapy right away, or it would be best to use it at a later stage depending on the kind of treatment planned. Unless the doctor is sure that it is the right form treatment, he or she will never recommend it. The location of cancer affected the part of the body, and the stage of the disease determines the choice of treatment. However, once the doctor decides about radiation therapy, you must learn about certain things to avoid during the treatment. During radiation you should avoid these things.

Stop using Aloe Vera

During the treatment, patients might experience the common side effect of radiodermatitis that shows up in the form of skin irritation, blisters, swelling, and tanned or sunburn-like appearance. For relief from pain and discomfort, patients often use Aloe Vera, a natural ingredient used in beauty products. But Aloe Vera can severely interfere with the treatment, and you must never use it until the treatment is over. 

Avoid vitamins

Vitamins are good for health, but you must stop taking certain vitamins during radiotherapy treatment because it can interfere with the treatment. If you are taking vitamins A, C, D, and E, your doctor will advise you to stop it during the treatment. The vitamins might interfere with the radiation and reduce its ability to destroy cancer cells.  Free radicals which are highly energized molecules and generated during radiotherapy helps to destroy cancer cells, but the antioxidants in the vitamins interrupt the process of generating free radicals that reduce the power of radiation to kill cancer cells. To avoid the conflict, doctors would advise you to stop taking vitamins during the treatment.

Do not miss any session

The appointments for the treatment sessions are fluid and tend to change at short notice for which you must be prepared. You must be flexible in adjusting to the timings so that you do not miss any session which can otherwise be bad for the treatment. Accept the sudden changes in appointments that can happen if someone cancels the appointment at the last minute while some others may take more time to complete their session.

Missed sessions not only prolongs the treatment but also increase the chances of cancer return.