A mesothelioma diagnosis is very traumatic. You might be in denial and question your fate. Even during this chaotic time, you have to make crucial decisions, consult doctors and get into a cancer center. But, the thought of what will happen to your family and kids, who will support them financially, beats everything else. Unfortunately, cancer-related stress does not go anywhere any time soon. Sometimes it is about your family; other times, it is about test results, choice of treatments, payment plans, and the list can go on and on.
Studies have shown that stress can impact your mental and physical well-being. Some effects of stress on your body include an upset digestive system, risk of heart attack, stroke, suppressed immune system, and mental health issues. So, the only option is to manage your stress and learn to fight it. Here are some ways to manage stress after being diagnosed with fatal cancer.
1. Don’t be afraid of asking for legal help
Some people try to hide their suffering from their families and friends because they don’t want to hurt them. But in the case of mesothelioma, you can’t fight it alone. The more you try to isolate and take it all on you, the difficult it becomes. Asking for help means both legal and personal help. A mesothelioma diagnosis makes you eligible to file for a compensation claim and hold the culprits responsible. A mesothelioma lawsuit and the resultant compensation lessen your financial burden of arranging ‘money for costly cancer treatment. Get in touch with a mesothelioma law firm and discuss your situation with them. They will help you collect the evidence and file a legal complaint in court. Their effort may result in winning compensation in the shortest possible time.
2. Develop your support group
Having people around you who can lessen your personal responsibilities like taking care of kids, taking them to school, doing groceries, not to mention taking you to the hospital, can help immensely. Having a support group that you can trust acts as a stress buster. Asking for help is beneficial, and it in no way makes you a diminished person. You can also ask for financial help if paying for medical bills seem like an impossibility. Assuming that you have already filed for a mesothelioma compensation claim, you can pay them back later once you receive the compensation.
3. Add exercise to your routine
Even if you feel tired due to medications and treatment, try moving your muscles and exercising. American Cancer Society lists exercise as a safe activity during cancer treatment. So, there is no harm in physically moving your body. Exercise improves muscle strength, increases blood vessel and heart health, and reduces stress. With time, it also helps you fight fatigue as well. If you are unsure of which steps and exercises are safer for you, consulting your physician always helps.
This is an ancient way of treating symptoms such as pain. This method uses tiny needles inserted at different locations on the patient’s body. These needles manage pain. So, this treatment is often used as a complementary treatment when other traditional treatments are also employed simultaneously. Research has proved several health benefits of acupuncture, including decreased fatigue, pain, nausea, sleep problems, and improved quality of life. As a result of these benefits, feeling less anxious is often a complementary benefit of acupuncture. Think about it, the more you are in pain, the more is often the level of stress and vice versa.
Another way to reduce stress is to meditate. In meditation, people focus their attention on a particular point or aspect. The focal point is something pleasant that draws your attention away from stressful thoughts and scenarios. The Health benefits of meditation mentioned in the research literature include: improved heart rate, decreased blood pressure, reduced stress, and decreased triglycerides. Meditation has also been studied in relation to cancer patients. It is found that those patients who meditate can achieve a better quality of life than those who do not. In the same study, it was also seen that meditation improves physical and emotional well-being. Meditation may also be convenient for many cancer patients as it does not involve much physical activity. Moreover, patients can practice meditation from any location.
6. Take up new Hobbies
Diversions and hobbies can really help the patients slow down the noise in their brains caused by stress. Hobbies keep you occupied; hence, you can do something other than worry about your condition. Choice of hobbies and diversion are different for all patients based on their personality traits. Options are endless; some commonly adopted hobbies are reading or enrolling in an exciting course and spending their time learning about something.
7. Spending time with old friends
Spending time with your relatives is a stress-busting exercise. Engage with people who are aware of your life and recall your memories together. You can also engage with people who worked with you in the past. If they are from the same workplace you worked at, chances are they may have been fighting mesothelioma too. Asking them about their struggles and developing a mutual support group can help both parties in this difficult time.
There is nothing more devastating than getting a mesothelioma diagnosis. It won’t take much time before you slip into hopelessness and desolation. Your denial may restrict you from taking the right steps for yourself and your family. But remember, it is also the time to gain courage and fight this disease. While stress is an inevitable consequence, some stress-busting strategies can help reduce anxiety and avoid cancer-induced depression. Some of these tested strategies are mentioned in this article; make sure t spread the good word.