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Sexual & Intimacy Issues for Women with Breast Cancer

Learn how to cope with sexual and intimacy issues in this Howcast breast cancer video with expert Marisa Weiss, MD.

Transcript

"Breast Cancer Support: Coping with Sexual and Intimacy Issues

Hi, I'm Doctor Marisa Weiss, president and founder of breastcancer.org. I'm also a practicing oncologist, and mom, and also a breast cancer survivor. So I'm happy to share information with you today that could help protect your life against breast cancer. Your sex life and how you feel about yourself sexually can take a big hit after a breast cancer diagnosis. I mean it can affect you in so many different ways. For some women the breast surgery itself it can be removal of the breast. There may or may not be reconstruction. Part of the breast may be removed. You may have discomfort, pain. If you went through chemo you probably lost your hair and maybe wearing a wig. There's weight gain that can happen during chemo therapy. None of these things make you feel any sexier. That's if you're in a relationship or you're not in a relationship. But it's good for us and healthy for us and fun for us to be in a relationship and to have intimacy in our lives. So, one of the goals after breast cancer treatment is to get your sexy back. And I'm talking about getting back into your life those you know the fun of connecting with somebody else in an intimate way. It could be sex in a different way than it used to be. You've got to be able to talk about things that have changed. You may have vaginal dryness. You may need more foreplay. You might need to discover vibrators and other lubricants and stimulant creams or things that maybe you've never even considered before. But ladies, it is time to get resourceful and to open your mind to new solutions for a challenging problem. Some women like to get sexy films or read sexy books to get in the mood. You'd be surprised that if with more foreplay and more attention to your sexual response your vagina can do a lot to get ready for intercourse. It gets longer. It gets wider. It gets fluffier and wetter. So that's a really important area to explore. If you're not in a relationship and you're trying to figure out how to meet somebody after a breast cancer diagnosis, that's a challenge for anybody meeting a good person. But there are plenty of people out there that are open to meeting someone who's had a challenge in her life. He may have had challenge or she may have a challenge in her life even women in relationships have to sort of recalibrate sort of rediscover what is meaningful to them and how they're going to interact in an intimate way. And don't forget the romance. You know he best sex occurs within the best relationships. And for many of us just the sharing of companionship and the romance can make us feel a lot closer to each other. So I recommend romance, gifts of jewelry, a trip to the adult toy store. Find the back shelf of the bookcase. Whatever you need to do to get your sexy back."

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