Don't neglect your emotional needs during this scary time.
The battle against breast cancer can be very draining. On top of the physical symptoms that go along with cancer and its common treatment methods, your feelings are also likely to become unpredictable. Emotional support is just as crucial for your recovery as your surgeries, chemotherapy, or radiation therapy. The benefits of a strong support system include:
- People to share your highs and lows with – Your feelings need a place to be expressed. Frequent opportunities to talk can keep you from getting too overwhelmed.
- Someone to come to important appointments with you – It's best for cancer patients to have a friend or family member with them during talks with their doctor. Not only can they offer emotional support if you receive bad news, they can take notes and remember which questions to ask if you're struggling to think clearly.
- People who will check in and make sure you are taking care of yourself – As effective as some cancer treatments may be, they often result in a lack of appetite and energy. Someone who makes sure that you are eating and attending doctor's appointments is invaluable to your recovery.
A strong support system looks different for every cancer patient. You may find the right people for you in several places, including:
- Family members – A spouse, your children, or other relatives often step into a caretaker role.
- Friends or co-workers – The people in your life may surprise you by how involved they are wiling to be when you become ill.
- An official support group – Even patients with a lot of friends and family may find they benefit from these groups. The members of your group will understand exactly what you're going through, and they'll be able to offer spot-on advice and perspectives.
Don't battle your breast cancer alone! The Medical Center of Plano hosts a support group that meets on the third Monday of every month. Find out more on our website, or give us a call at (214) 473-7784.