Psychosocial Support Options for People with Cancer
You have learned that you or a person close to you have an oncological pathology and a diagnosis has been made that violates your plans, inspires anxiety and uncertainty. Do not give in to these feelings, because now you especially need all your mental strength, a clear mind and will to fight the danger that has arisen.
Rule No. 1. Find a partner to discuss the problem
First of all, think with whom to share this problem. You can’t be packed in. Repeatedly contemplating and weighing disturbing facts, a person always unwittingly aggravates his reaction to them, “intimidates” himself. This is a very accurate psychological observation. Therefore, first of all you need an interlocutor.
Rule No. 2. Choosing an interlocutor
Choose it carefully. Beware of those who like to laugh at other people’s difficulties, and even add oil to the fire by starting to tell you a lot of sad examples that, as you understand, do not apply to you at all. You need a reasonable and active interlocutor, which, first of all, can be your doctor or psychologist.
Close people. You also need interlocutors among close people. And here, first of all, it is not knowledge or even organizational skills that are important (although later, perhaps, it will be important for you to have a mobile, active person who is ready to practically help in solving current issues). First of all, talk to those who really care about you, who are attached to you. Feel how they worry about you, because our loved ones often worry even about the common cold, and you know that their fear is not a characteristic of the danger of the disease, but simply an expression of their love and care. It is important for you to understand that they need you. Let it be an incentive to forget about work, household chores for a while and clearly follow the doctor’s instructions.
Doctor. Ask your doctor carefully what actions you need to take. Perhaps he will give you real statistics on your type of disease – but in fact, oncology today has several dozen diagnoses that are recognized worldwide 100% curable. It is possible that we are not talking about a diagnosis yet, but only about the first suspicion, which requires additional tests and verification.
Rule No. 3. The time factor
In oncology, time is an important factor, and here it is important not to delay and not torment yourself with doubts – do I really need it? Do all additional actions quickly, clearly and in a timely manner. Doctors often rush you not because everything is already bad, but just because right now they see good prospects for treatment. In addition, scientists are developing diagnostic and treatment standards solely to achieve a positive outcome. An oncological diagnosis does not always mean the path to a chronic, recurrent disease, often you just need to spend some time on treatment. But this time is usually very significant.
Rule No. 4. Learn to control yourself
Psychologists believe that it is very dangerous to accept the disease as an integral part of yourself, to “let” it into your life. If we take into account the nature of cancer, our body has already made the mistake of accepting cells that are subject to dying for new and valuable elements of its structure, which it actively nourishes and grows. Therefore, our psyche should be actively tuned to the rejection of the disease, the rejection of the tumor. Do not think that this problem has entered your life forever. Think about what will happen after the treatment stage – believe that such a time will come – think about what you want to come to, what you want to achieve. The believer wins – this must be kept in mind always and everywhere, and not only in illness.
Rule No. 5. Control of the situation
Another important resource is organizational. Be businesslike about your treatment plans. Determine on the basis of which medical institution you will undergo it, find out what additional opportunities and social benefits you have (a lot of background information is contained online). And, of course, consult who can help you practically.
Rule No. 7. I act, I fight, I live
It may happen that at first you will not have enough information about future prospects and opportunities. Therefore, your actions are additional consultations and diagnostics. Often, the first words about a suspected oncological disease can be told to you by a therapist or an ultrasound doctor, and not all doctors of these specialties are fully familiar with complex cases when the reason for doubt they noticed may be similar to a tumor, but not at all. Do not rush to psychics, astrologers and folk healers, etc. – You will most likely be deceived.
Find a qualified doctor, preferably in a specialized oncological institution, and spare no time and effort to thoroughly check all doubts. This specialization requires scientific thinking, a lot of experience and compassion. Every year, the latest treatment technologies appear in the world, according to which the oncologists undergo special training courses, so their knowledge is now an important resource for you. Fight together with the doctors.
Life. Sometimes during the illness it seems that it has separated us from the usual circle of people, worries, interests, and thus made us lonely. Life seems to be divided into the time “before” and “after” the diagnosis. But often we make ourselves so lonely. Look for those who can help you, and you will see that there are many such people. Keep a “clear mind”, do not entrust your fate to vague fears or annoying “magicians”. After all, this is your life, you have it, it goes on, and although you have many doctors, healthcare opportunities, inventions of modern science next to you – you should take all to overcome the disease.