There is real bravery in facing a chronic illness every day, be it physical, psychological, or a combination of the two.
If you have just been diagnosed with a chronic or long-term health problem, it is easy to feel scared and overwhelmed. However, there are some tips you can follow that will help make sure that your journey to recovery or life management is easier so that the illness you have doesn’t have to take over your life.
In this article, the chronic illness that will be spoken about is lung cancer. So, if you or a family member have received this diagnosis, please read on.
Learn More About Lung Cancer
When it comes to lung cancer, few people (if any) who don’t work in the medical field know anything about it. So, if you are attending the Moffitt Cancer Center (Tampa, Florida) for treatment or are going to any other cancer center, aim to go in with as much information as you can.
It can be tough to learn about something as scary as lung cancer, but knowing more will help you to make better and more informed choices about your care. It will also help you know what to expect from the treatment and will help to psychologically prepare you for any hard times that may lie ahead.
Of course, you cannot and should not carry the weight of a cancer diagnosis by yourself. When you are diagnosed with lung cancer, your nurse and/or doctor will probably recommend that you attend a support group, either online or in person.
This can be hugely beneficial, as you will meet others who have been through what you have, as well as meet with those who can offer genuine empathy and compassion.
Take Time for Yourself
One thing that surprises a lot of people who receive a cancer diagnosis is how much it takes over their life. Yes, you have cancer, but you will still need to live your life, even if you have had to give up work to undertake the treatment.
Try to engage in the activities that you enjoy and aim to put aside some time every day to meditate, write in a journal, or simply take a walk around your local area. This will help to keep your mind in a better place and will also help you to identify potentially uncomfortable emotions and reflect on them.
Stay In Touch with Healthcare Professionals
Some people who have received a lung cancer diagnosis are surprised by how many medical appointments they have to attend, as well as how many letters they will receive. However, some people may find it hard to want to stay in touch with doctors and nurses because, well, they diagnosed them with this awful illness in the first place!
It is tempting to run away from this information (and those who brought it), but you should aim to attend all of the appointments that you need to and, if anything changes, let the medical professionals know immediately.