In terms of mental health when you are diagnosed with cancer, you are almost guaranteed to experience grief and loss feelings. The different types of emotional loss you may encounter include loss of hope, friendship, marriage, confidence and income. As well as a cancer patient often, you may also have to deal with anxiety and depression. The prevalence rate of anxiety among people diagnosed with this fatal disease is about 67%.
Caregivers recommend that as a cancer patient, you have to tend to your mental and physical health and well-being every day. Emotionally and physically dealing with the whole process is vital for avoiding other potential health issues and the reduction of your quality of life. Consequently, below are a few things to remember to help you cope with a cancer diagnosis.
1. Find Social Support
The level of support you get when in a crisis or dealing with a health problem such as cancer plays a significant role in how well you can cope eventually.
The thought of informing your family and friends about your cancer diagnosis is usually terrifying. Still, it is encouraged that your loved ones have the information since you will greatly rely on their support throughout the exhausting and difficult treatment phase.
Social support may also emanate from online forums or cancer support groups.
2. Regular Exercise
Performing regular exercise during and after treatment of cancer is beneficial in various ways. Exercising can enable you to expel negative frustrations from your being and feel physically and emotionally reinvigorated.
Regular exercise helps in eliminating fatigue and exhaustion associated with the treatment of cancer. In addition, engaging in a routine physical activity such as walking or swimming may help in combating depression, anxiety, loss of strength and weight gain.
3. Healthy Eating
Cancer treatment and management also come with quite a number of unwarranted physical side effects on your body. Some of the consequences may include dry mouth, eye problems, hair loss, organ damage, erectile dysfunction and itchy or dry skin. A treatment plan for cancer should include a plan allowing safe eating. The plan should be developed by an expert dietitian nutritionist specialized in the treatment of cancer.
Eating of healthy foods is a top priority as it is helpful in the management of the side effects of cancer, delivery of quicker recovery and health improvement. Healthy and safe eating habits may involve:
- Eating white meat like poultry and fish
- Avoiding processed meats including bacon
- Consumption of foods rich in fibre content such as lentils
- Avoiding the consumption of excess alcohol
- Not consuming foods having a low content of nutrient and high-calories like fruit-flavoured drinks
4. Prepare For Bodily Changes
You should ask your oncologist about potential physical changes in advance before the beginning of treatment. For instance, it is a common occurrence that treatment often yields a loss of hair. Therefore to ensure that you can still appear attractive and feel at ease, you can consult with your image expert about things like clothes to wear, hairpieces and makeup.
5. Get A Restful Sleep At Night
Every night you have to try to sleep for a duration of not less than seven or eight hours. Getting enough sleep is advantageous in guaranteeing your health improvement and enhancement of your mood, ability to cope and memory.
To get enough, good-quality night sleep, some of the tips to observe may include:
- Limiting the intake of stimulants
- Avoiding the use of computers and phones a few hours before sleep
- Having a set bedtime
6. Avoid Infection Risk
During treatment, your body’s immune system often has a lot to deal with and hence avoiding potential infection can help in keeping the workload manageable. Avoid exposure to toxins in the environment, such as asbestos and maintain healthy hygiene.
7. Stress Management
Managing your level of stress is important in the maintenance of stable mental and physical health. For stress management, there are different relaxation techniques that may come in handy like yoga, mindfulness and meditation.
The different ways that used to provide you with ultimate comfort before cancer diagnosis like spiritual guidance and talking to a mental health professional can be relied upon for coping with treatment. And as you have seen, there are numerous other coping strategies that you may find useful.