Thursday, April 18, 2013

Coping With Cancer

Learning that you or a family member has cancer can be devastating. After receiving this diagnosis, try some of these tips as coping mechanisms:

Learn everything you can about your cancer.
When you go to medical appointments, bring a list of questions to ask your doctor. Also, see if a friend or family member can go with you to help remember some of the discussion points.

Find someone to talk to about your diagnosis.
You may want to join a support group or talk to someone who went through a similar experience. If you don’t feel comfortable with either of these options, talk to a counselor or therapist. A friend or family member can also be a good resource to add to your support team.

Stay connected to your family and friends.
Many people will want to help and support you, but may not know what to do. Be vocal in your needs and allow friends and family the opportunity to help you. Let them know your needs, whether it’s a meal, a ride, or a listening ear.

Take care of yourself physically and emotionally.
Follow your doctor’s orders. Eating a healthy diet can help you feel better. Make sure to get enough sleep, even if that means taking a few naps throughout the day. To take care of yourself emotionally by writing in a journal, or learning relaxation exercises.

If a family member or friend has cancer, remember that he or she may need someone to just listen. Be open to spending time without offering solutions. Focusing on happy events and interactions can help to redirect the focus and create positive memories. 

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