Cancer is an overwhelming reality. We all know what it is and hear the word every day. However, the word can still create a lot of fear, anxiety and stress. Especially when you hear that a loved one has cancer.
The incidence of cancer in the population is very high and the World Health Organization warns of its increase. This suggests that the current 14 million diagnosed cases will reach about 22 million by 2030. Thus, cancer is a problem for many, both those affected and their relatives.
When you experience this disease on your own, such as when your loved one has cancer, you face one of the most difficult experiences of your life. Undoubtedly, it is one of the most painful situations a person can ever go through. This is due to its very aggressive nature and the extreme uncertainty it causes. Therefore, staying calm is absolutely necessary to face this ordeal and overcome it.
Effect of diagnosis
When a person is diagnosed with cancer, he or she and his or her entire social circle are aware of its effects psychologically. Because, as everyone knows, cancer is a very serious disease. In addition, its development is quite unpredictable.
Despite medical advances and the growing number of cancer survivors, the disease inevitably evokes overwhelming feelings and thoughts. Therefore, we tend to automatically think of dramatic outcomes. These absorb energy and make us feel immensely sad.
You will probably feel tired, sad, anxious, angry and most of all frustrated. For this reason, you may not make the best decisions. Diagnosis often causes a crisis for both the patient and their loved ones.
How to stay calm when a loved one has cancer
- The diagnosis is an impressive moment. In addition, it is in many cases the most difficult time. Then reality strikes. In order to deal with this one of life’s most shaky moments, a patient needs a lot of support, and you need to be patient. Namely, you have to deal with all his doubts and fears.
- Knowing yourself is the key to emotional control. According to neuroscience, we have about 60,000 thoughts a day. Most of these are negative, recurring, and related to the past. The worst part about this is that we tend to believe them. Therefore, when someone receives a cancer diagnosis or other negative news, such thoughts occur more often and more strongly in both the patient himself and family members. Controlling negative thoughts means being able to help the patient better.
- The World Health Organization states that our mental health is very important to our well-being. According to The Lancet Psychiatry , about 25 percent of cancer patients develop a mood disorder. This also happens to the people around them. Therefore, it is important that you do not neglect yourself.
- Knowledge is power. Usually, the first reaction to a cancer diagnosis is fear and confusion. This is due to the fear of the unknown. Both feelings are due to ignorance. Therefore, you help the patient by making a plan for what happens next.
- It is inevitable to associate cancer with death. It has been like this for years. But remember, the number of cancer survivors is increasing. However, it is a topic that the patient may need to talk about. If so, you should listen to him, even if you are tempted by the idea of diverting the conversation away from the topic.
Communication and assistance
We are not taught to die. After all, there aren’t really any rules or standards to follow. However, you can offer help. For example, you can help a patient say goodbye the way he or she wants. If he doesn’t know how, you can help him with that.
- Communication in these most sensitive moments is extremely important. Because when communication works, it increases coherence. In addition, communicating with others means that patient care is not limited to one person.
When the word cancer first appears on the horizon, feelings of fear, anxiety, and helplessness inevitably arise. This is because one must recognize the fact that life can change forever only in the blink of an eye. The shadow of cancer is often so threatening that you and others close to the patient need to join forces. This means communication with doctors, nurses and psychologists, as well as the patient and all those close to him. It can really change the world.