Best Pillows to use After Breast Surgery
8 Types of Mastectomy Pillows for Comfort During Your Recovery
A little support during your recovery can go a long way and the right pillow can bring tremendous comfort and relief during your breast cancer treatment and recovery despite their small size.
Pillows are an essential part of any good night’s sleep, but mastectomy pillows have a few extra benefits that make them even more useful for cancer patients. Breast surgery recovery pillows are designed to provide additional support for various parts of the body affected by cancer treatment, such as the neck, shoulders, and back.
When choosing a mastectomy pillow for breast cancer treatment and recovery, try to find one that gives you enough support without being too firm or too soft. You’ll also want to choose one that is easy to carry around with you when traveling or visiting family members who don’t have room for an entire bed set up in their homes!
There are many different types of mastectomy pillows available. These recovery pillows come in all different sizes, shapes, colors, and materials so there’s sure to be one that fits your particular needs perfectly!
SeatBelt Cushion Mastectomy Pillows
A seat belt pillow is a small cushion that attaches to your seat belt. It helps relieve pressure on the breast and chest, which can be very common after surgery. Sitting in a car with this type of pillow is much more comfortable than sitting without one.
One benefit of using this type of pillow is that it can reduce pain in your neck and back caused by wearing a seatbelt for long periods of time. Another benefit is that it keeps the shoulder strap from rubbing against your recovery area, irritating stitches and tender areas while driving or riding in the car. This makes it easier and more comfortable to drive short distances without getting tired or feeling discomfort because you’re not constantly adjusting your position due to pain caused by wearing a seatbelt!
It’s important to note that there are several different styles available depending on what works best for each person’s needs. Our personal favorites are from the Breast And Chest Buddy®. No matter the procedure or complication, their collection of surgery and Port-a-Cath seatbelt cushion pillows are a perfect solution.
Armpit Comfort Mastectomy Pillows
Armpit comfort pillows have been created to provide much-needed relief for breast cancer patients undergoing treatment. When choosing a pillow, look for one that’s made from soft fabric that won’t irritate your skin. The best material is cotton, which allows air flow around your skin—this helps prevent irritation from occurring underneath the bandages on your incision site due to sweating overnight while sleeping with them uncovered under blankets (which can trap moisture).
They can also be helpful for women who experience soreness or tightness in their upper chest area due to radiation treatments or surgery. A good armpit pillow should feel comfortable under your arms without adding any pressure that would cause additional discomfort.
Heart-Shaped Mastectomy Pillows for Breast Support
After breast surgery, it’s normal to feel sore. In fact, your new anatomy might be feeling off-kilter for a while after your surgery—and a small heart-shaped pillow can help. Breast support pillows are designed to help keep the chest from moving when you cough or sneeze, which can be uncomfortable while recovering from surgery. These pillows are also shaped like a heart or moon crest and are available in various sizes and styles that fit your body type.
One of our favorites is the Billow Heart Pillow ($24-28). Billow’s pillow fits any shape and body size and is specifically designed to cushion and support the arms and breasts following breast surgery.
Wedge pillows are another comfortable option for sleeping. They’re designed to elevate your upper body, which can help reduce swelling and blood clots. Wedge pillows also help ease heartburn and breathing problems, as well as snoring and acid reflux. For example, the Restore You therapeutic support wedge pillow is the perfect solution for anyone looking to recover in comfort. The support and firmness of this pillow adjust to your body’s natural curves, allowing you to stay in position while sleeping or relaxing. This supportive sleep wedge solution is designed to provide firm support for proper alignment and added comfort. Lightweight and portable, yet durable enough to last for years, this pillow will keep you sleeping soundly night after night.
Pillows for Lower Back Support
To support your lower back, you’ll want to use a pillow or cushions to elevate both your head and pelvis. This helps relieve pressure on the lower back and may reduce pain in this area.
Long term use of pillows is not recommended because it can cause an uneven distribution of weight that can lead to muscle fatigue. However, short term use of pillows can provide relief from certain types of pain associated with breast cancer treatment and recovery.
Donut Pillows for tailbone pain
Donut pillows are a great option for anyone who’s experiencing tailbone pain. These cushions provide relief by taking pressure off the tailbone, allowing you to sit comfortably throughout the day.
If you’re not familiar with donut pillows, they’re also called coccyx cushions or seat wedges. They’re great for those who experience hemorrhoids as a side effect of chemo-induced constipation or other similar ailments that can cause discomfort in their rear ends. You can purchase them at many medical supply stores and online retailers like Amazon and eBay—but keep in mind that if you want one customized to fit your exact body type, it’s best to shop around at different locations until you find what suits you best!
If you sleep on your side, a knee pillow is an excellent option because it will keep the leg that’s under the body straight, which can help reduce and relieve lower back pain. When your back is comfortable, you’ll toss and turn less, and may get to sleep faster. The pillow can also work well for those who have been diagnosed with osteoporosis or weak knees, as it keeps them in alignment and lets them rest comfortably.
Knee pillows are also great for people who suffer from neck or back pain due to their ability to provide relief from discomfort throughout the night when resting on one’s side; however some find these types of pillows too bulky or uncomfortable in this position so be sure to test out any option before purchasing one!
Neck pillows can be a useful tool for recovery. Common causes of neck pain after a mastectomy include:
- Stress on the neck and shoulders from carrying additional weight from the breast tissue that has been removed
- Poor posture when sleeping or sitting up because your balance is thrown off by losing your natural breast shape, requiring you to shift your weight in order to keep your center of gravity over your hips as you sleep or sit
- Swelling around the surgical site that restricts movement, causing pain in the head and neck area
A Full Recovery Pillow System
There are many other body pillows on the market, but this is the only FULL pillow system that addresses all of your problems. You do not need to supplement this pillow system with any other pillows. The value is there! You can use these pieces again and again for different surgeries or separately to sleep if you have a hard time parting with one of the pillows.
The Sleep Again Pillow System is specifically developed to support your recovery journey. The patent-pending design provides ideal back, arm and neck support required for post-surgical back sleeping.
Every Sleep Again Pillow System includes five pieces:
- Two Contoured Side Pillows to cradle back & hips
- Upper Body Wedge for optimal body incline
- Leg Support Wedge to gently elevate legs
- Head Pillow to provide head support
- Removable, washable slipcovers for every piece
Cancer Rehabilitation Physical Therapy after Breast Cancer Surgery
If you’ve had a lumpectomy, mastectomy, or breast reconstruction surgery and are experiencing any pain in your back or chest, or any other symptoms at all that are lasting, talk to your oncologist about cancer rehabilitation. There is a high frequency of dysfunction in back and chest muscles alone among women who have had breast cancer surgery, and some physical therapists believe that all women should see a physical therapist after breast cancer surgery based on this fact. Many cancer centers now have these programs (STAR programs) to help survivors find a new normal that doesn’t mean settling for issues that can be relieved.
Cancer rehabilitation is different from traditional physical therapy because it’s focused on helping patients regain their quality of life after cancer treatment has ended. While traditional physical therapy focuses on improving mobility and range of motion and reducing pain, cancer rehabilitation focuses on regaining strength and endurance so that patients can return to their normal activities as soon as possible. In addition to traditional exercises like stretching and strengthening exercises, cancer rehabilitation may include:
- Nutrition counseling
- Pain management techniques
- Cardiac rehabilitation (if needed)
- Emotional support
There are lots of different ways that a pillow can help with your recovery.
Pillows can help with many side effects of cancer treatment. They can provide support and comfort during recovery from surgery, as well as during other treatments like radiation or chemotherapy. Pillows can also make it easier to sleep, which is incredibly important after cancer treatment because sleep helps the body heal.
The right mastectomy pillow will depend on what you need it for. If you have pain in your upper back or neck, choose a firmer pillow that supports this area of the body. If you have trouble sleeping because of soreness in your lower back or hips from lying on one side all night long, try using two regular pillows stacked under each arm instead of one larger one under your head (you’ll still be able to sleep comfortably).
If you’re having trouble breathing through your nose due to nasal congestion caused by surgery or radiation therapy (or just from having had colds), try using a contoured memory foam pillow made especially for this purpose! The best way to get started finding out what kind works best is simply trying different ones until something feels right—there’s no rule saying that only certain types will work; they all do their job differently depending on what type of sleeper needs them most!
You might think that you’ll be able to get by without pillows during your recovery period, but even if you don’t use them every day, it’s important to remember that they do exist for when you need them most.
It’s important to have a comfortable sleep system at home while you’re recovering from breast cancer surgery. If you’re looking for more information about getting a good night’s rest while undergoing cancer treatment and recovery, check out these resources:
- BreastCancer.org: Mastectomy: What to Expect
- Cancer Treatment Centers of America: Double Mastectomy, What to Expect
- Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center: About Your Mastectomy
You Got This! xoxo