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Bloomhill NewsClinical Care

Living well with cancer: Emotions and cancer

By January 11, 2023No Comments

All information provided by Bloomhill is based on research and best practice guidelines. Our model of care utilizes the Clinical Oncology Society of Australia (COSA) domains of wellness along with available clinical evidence.  Always consult your care team regarding matters that affect your health. This is a guide intended for information only.


How are you Travelling? 

Just as cancer affects your physical health, it can bring up a wide range of emotions you are not used to dealing with. It can also make existing feelings seem more intense. They may change daily, hourly, or even minute to minute. This is true whether you are currently in treatment, done with treatment, or a friend or family member. These feelings are all normal.  

A diagnosis of cancer marks the beginning of a journey full of emotional, psychological, physical and practical challenges. These challenges can relate to the shock of a cancer diagnosis and fears about the future. Or perhaps they are due to the physical side-effects of treatment such as nausea and fatigue. There are also the practical costs of treatment to deal with and the financial implications of having to take time off work. More specific emotional problems can range from concerns about body image after treatment to periods of anxiety or depression. The emotional, physical and practical journey of some people can take a different direction altogether if the cancer comes back. Others must deal with the challenges of surviving cancer.  

There are times in your cancer journey when you are more likely to experience higher levels of distress or anxiety, such as when you are first diagnosed or at the time of surgery. Some people also experience significant stress when they start hormonal therapies or chemotherapy or when they finish treatment. It is very normal to feel fear and anxiety that the cancer may come back for years after your treatment has finished. Many people find this fear is particularly high around the time of regular medical check-ups, or upcoming scans.  

It can be helpful to talk to friends and family about how you are feeling. If you are anxious or worried about what the future holds, talk to a member of your treatment team. Remember, the feelings of anxiety, sadness, fear or worry will not last forever. Most people find that things improve with support and with time. 

Family, friends and colleagues may expect you to be ‘back to normal’ when treatment is over. But for you, ‘normal’ may not mean quite the same thing as it did before your diagnosis. You may feel differently about your body or your relationships, or you may have different priorities now that treatment is over. Some people find it hard to manage these changes.

Here at Bloomhill we are focused on supporting people and family throughout their journey.  


Tips and Tricks: 

Here are a few remedies that can be simple but effective.  

Find Ways to Help Yourself Relax

Whatever activity helps you unwind, you should take some time to do it. Meditation, guided imagery, and deep breathing techniques and gentle exercise classes are just a few ways that have been shown to help others; these may help you relax when you feel worried.   

Supportive Therapies at Bloomhill: 

At Bloomhill we have a team of psychologist, counsellors and therapist, we also have a range of services such as Massage, acupuncture, and reflexology can promote relaxation, lessen stress and anxiety and assist in relaxation.

Activity and Support Groups: We have group meditation, Art Therapy, Yoga, Qi Chi and an Exercise physiologist that can assist in supporting your needs.  Several support groups are also available to attend.

Allied Health: Talking with a psychologist, counsellor or one of our lovely nurses can also help alleviate emotional distress and help you with support and coping mechanisms. 

Using your mindset to cope with your emotions 

  1. Express Your Feelings. People have found that when they express strong feelings like anger or sadness, they are more able to let go of them. Some sort out their feelings by talking to friends or family, other cancer survivors, a support group, or a counsellor. But even if you prefer not to discuss your cancer with others, you can still sort out your feelings by thinking about them or writing them down. 
  2. Look for the Positive. Sometimes this means looking for the good even in a tough time or trying to be hopeful instead of thinking the worst. Try to use your energy to focus on wellness and what you can do now to stay as healthy as possible.
  3. Don’t Blame Yourself for Your Cancer. Some people believe that they got cancer because of something they did or did not do. But scientists do not know why one person gets cancer and one person does not. All bodies are different. Remember, cancer can happen to anyone.
  4. Don’t Try to Be Upbeat If You’re Not. Many people say they want to have the freedom to give in to their feelings sometimes. As one woman said, “When it gets really bad, I just tell my family I’m having a bad cancer day and go upstairs and crawl into bed.”
  5. You Choose When to Talk about Your Cancer. It can be hard for people to know how to talk to you about your cancer. Often loved ones mean well, but they do not know what to say or how to act. You can make them feel more at ease by asking them what they think or how they feel.
  6. Be as Active as You Can. Getting out of the house and doing something can help you focus on other things besides cancer and the worries it brings. Exercise or gentle yoga and stretching can help too.
  7. Look for Things You Enjoy. You may like hobbies such as woodworking, photography, reading, or crafts. Or find creative outlets such as art, movies, music, or dance.
  8. Look at What You Can Control. Some people say that putting their lives in order helps. Being involved in your health care, keeping your appointments, and making changes in your lifestyle are among the things you can control. Even setting a daily schedule can give you a sense of control. And while no one can control every thought, some say that they try not to dwell on the fearful ones, but instead do what they can to enjoy the positive parts of life. 

Contact us at the center on 07 5445  5794 if you have any questions.

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