My Mastectomy MUST Haves
I've been asked for this list so many times over the past week!
Wow, it's hard to believe it's only been a week since I got my mastectomy! In this past week though, I definitely feel like I've become a pro at navigating post-surgical life.
The items below are my recommendations for the items you must have on hand immediately after surgery. I made sure to purchase all these as soon as I had my surgery date, so I had about 3 weeks to prepare/place these orders. I definitely recommend having all of these at home before you even go under the knife to make your recovery as comfortable as possible. I've also noted below the items that I packed in my overnight bag to the hospital.
I'm planning on following up with another must-have list after I get my drains out, so stay tuned for that!
*Bring to hospital!
These are an amazing product created by a breast cancer survivor. The "pockets" have adhesive strips that securely and simply adhere to any fabrics. These are awesome because they eliminate the need to pin drains on your clothes or attach them to a lanyard - simply stick the pockets onto your PJs and slip the drains into them! Easy peasy. Pink Pockets also give you the freedom to wear your own clothing--aka comfy jammies--which I love!
Button Down Pajamas
*Bring a pair to hospital!
I bought several pairs of PJs during my pre-surgery shopping spree. The most important features you'll want to look for are: light, breathable fabrics and button down tops. I particularly like this and this set from Target, this set from Ralph Lauren (I brought these to the hospital because it's chilly!) and this sleepshirt (in a different pattern), also Ralph Lauren.
You absolutely must get this pillow. I wouldn't be able to sleep without it. I sleep with it in a "U" shape, with the opening at the bottom and me in the middle. I'm a side/stomach sleeper, so the first two nights were extremely uncomfortable to sleep until I figured out how to use this. I keep my arms up on either side and put one pillow behind my head, on top of the body pillow itself - SO comfortable!! I also use it during the day when I'm sitting up in bed.
On top of using a mountain of my normal pillows and my body pillow I mentioned above, I've been using this wedge pillow which is really a game changer. Though I can't comfortably sleep with it, I do use it throughout the day to sit upright. By putting you in an upright position, the pillow does half the work of sitting up for you (not an easy task!) There are several different brands of this pillow, but this one is one of the less expensive ones I've found and is also great quality! Be sure to use those handy dandy Bed Bath 20% off coupons for this one, friends😉
*Bring to hospital!
I got my eye mask as a gift and it's SUPER cute!! I'm not sure where my friend got this exact one, but I found some cute options at Etsy, Pottery Barn and Bergdorf. I definitely recommend having an eye mask both at the hospital and at home. During my overnight stay, nurses were in & out of my room all night and I was super nauseous coming out of the anesthesia. I really wouldn't have been able to sleep without it! I use this mask at home too because I've been taking midday naps and can't sleep when it's that bright. Gotta get those quality zzz's in where you can and having a sleep mask will help you milk every single minute of rest!
*Bring to hospital!
The first few days after surgery, I didn't even feel up to brushing my teeth - my mom had to do it for me! We're both glad we decided to get an electric toothbrush for me at the last minute. Having an electric brush made it easier when she had to help me out and it's also a lot easier now that I'm feeling a bit more mobility in my arms. I chose this particular brush because of the soft bristles - my teeth & gums are still sensitive from chemo!