Dealing with Being Diagnosed with Cancer
Being given a cancer diagnosis is tough. Once the diagnosis has settled, you might find yourself plagued with a multitude of emotions ranging from anxiety to fright. Knowing how to move forward is likely impossible at this point. However, this guide has been designed to help you better understand your diagnosis and ultimately cope with it.
1. Familiarize yourself with the diagnosis. Amid the shock of being given your diagnosis, it’s not unlikely that you simply forgot to ask questions. That’s okay. However, learning about your condition will help you make future decisions concerning your care. Questions you might want to consider asking your doctor are:
- Is my cancer treatable?
- What are the chances for a cure?
- What types of procedures and testing will I need?
- What will happen during treatment?
- What lifestyle changes should I make?
2. Maintain honesty. Always be direct and up-front about your health with your family, friends, doctors, and others. Concealing too much can create a sense of isolation that can ultimately worsen your state of affairs. Expressing emotions in an honest fashion can promote the right support from your peers.
3. Acknowledge the possibility of physical changes. Before treatment is the right frame of time to become at peace with the possibility of changes. Preparation beforehand will strengthen your ability to cope down the road.
Your doctor will be able to help you understand the changes you’ll experience down the road, if any. Certain drugs or treatments might lead to hair loss, and image experts will be able to help you select makeup, wigs, and clothing to help you maintain your comfort and self confidence. Keep in mind that many insurance companies will cover prostheses, wigs, and other similar items.
4. Promote healthy living. Living a healthy lifestyle will increase your overall energy. Healthy dietary choices and an adequate amount of rest each night will help keep fatigue and stress at bay.
You might also want to find physical activities you enjoy. Research has shown that exercise and physical activity helps with the coping process, and it can even promote the longevity.
Your next steps: allowing your family and friend to help. You’d be amazed at the number of ways in which your loved ones would be willing to help. They can help provide transportation, prepare food, run errands, and take care of chores around the house. Accept the help of those who offer it.
A cancer diagnosis doesn’t have to be the “end all” of your life. Stay in touch with your doctor, and utilize every single piece of advice given to you by him/her. Over time, you will learn how to manage your personal condition for your own benefit.