8 Point Guide For Aftercare For Cancer Patients
Being able to beat cancer is a great blessing. After all, cancer is a leading cause of death worldwide, claiming around 10 million lives in 2020. Based on a study conducted in the UK, while survival rates have doubled in the last 4 decades, 50% of those diagnosed with cancer still succumb to the disease within 10 years. The survival rate is also linked to income with lower income cancer patients negatively impacted due to inequitable access to early screening and effective treatment. In recent times, advances in cancer treatment such as systemic therapy (chemotherapy, targeted therapy, and immunotherapy) have enabled more people with cancer to be effectively treated with surgery using tailored treatment plans. Tumors that were previously untreatable (big tumors that have invaded deeper tissues) by surgery can now be shrunk using systemic therapy and then removed surgically.
However, surgery can still be a daunting experience – not only the procedure itself but also the preparation and recovery afterward. The outcome of your surgery will depend on various factors like the kind of cancer you suffer from, the type of surgery you undergo, and your general health. Once cancer treatment has ended, the patient still has to undergo regular medical exams and tests to determine whether the cancer has returned or spread to another body area. To care for a cancer patient’s health, using natural products as much as possible is a great help. Studies show that CBD oils help manage symptoms and overall wellness. This website offers a list of the best CBD oils out there!
Recovery from surgery
The speed at which you recover from surgery will depend on the type of procedure and your general health. It is essential to inquire with a healthcare provider at the best cancer hospitals about what you can expect to see in the days that follow post-surgery.
The following aftercare steps could enhance your life quality, helping you transition to survivorship.
A balanced diet is essential
Alter your diet to include plenty of vegetables, fruits, and whole grains. It’s generally an excellent idea to have an energizing diet focusing on vegetables and fruits.
When choosing your meals, you must take advice from the best cancer hospitals, and they may ask you to take at least two portions of fruit and vegetables daily. Choose foods low in saturated fats, such as lean meats, fish, eggs, nuts, seeds, and legumes. Select the most nutritious sources of carbohydrates, like whole grains, vegetables, and fruits.
Combining these foods will ensure that you’re getting enough nutrients and vitamins to keep your body more vital.
Cancer patients must visit their physicians for follow-up examinations regularly. Following up allows survivors to be involved in their treatment and regain the feeling of control they had lost. However, the schedule for follow-ups varies between individuals depending on general health, age, the kind of cancer, the remedy is chosen, and other aspects. The most frequent follow-up tests include endoscopy, imaging procedures, and blood tests.
Be mindful of side effects
Some cancer treatments may cause ongoing side effects. Some of these issues may show up years after treatment. Talk to your treatment team about your symptoms to know if they can be managed better. It is crucial to understand the short or long-term impacts of treatment on your health, problems that could arise, how to recognize them, and what to do about them.
Research has shown that anxiety and depression are more prevalent among long-term cancer survivors than their healthy peers who have no prior history of cancer. As a cancer patient, you might find that the emotional, physical, and social consequences have harmed your psychological well-being.
Look for support
The power of emotional support for cancer survivors can not be understated. Sharing conversations with others who have faced similar trials can be an immense source of relief, comfort, and positivity. These interactions can help you ease into the road ahead and also provide you with ideas to cope with potential problems.
Support programs, such as individual or group counseling and support groups, are quite prevalent.
Research indicates that people who participate in support groups experience an enhanced quality of life, including better quality of sleep and improved appetite.
Don’t exhaust yourself
Sleep disorders are more frequent among cancer patients or those who have survived. These can occur by physical changes, treatment side effects, stress, or other causes. However, getting enough rest is essential to recover. A good sleep at night can improve cognitive abilities, boost hormone levels, and lower blood pressure. It may also make you feel better overall.
If you experience excessive sleepiness during the day, consult with a physician at the best cancer hospitals. You could have an issue with sleep caused by the adverse effects of your cancer or treatment.
Don’t skip exercise
Regular exercise boosts your overall feeling of well-being following cancer treatment and can accelerate the recovery process. Exercise helps in strengthening and offers a less stressful experience. When you exercise daily, you may experience a better mood and higher self-esteem. It can lower the risk of cancer recurrence and alleviate the signs and symptoms of depression.
Incorporating physical activity into your daily routine won’t require any extra effort. Consult doctors at the best cancer hospitals before beginning any exercise program.
Smoking cigarettes or chewing tobacco further raises your increased risk of various forms of cancer. By putting it to a halt at the right moment, you can lower your chance of having cancer recurrence and reduce the risk of developing a second form of cancer (second primary cancer). Discuss with your doctor the options to help you stop smoking.
Cancer patients might choose to adopt more healthy lifestyles like taking up more exercise or quitting smoking cigarettes, as they’re interested in having a better life in general. The experience of being diagnosed with cancer can also cause people to reconsider their goals and appreciate life more happily. However, it is important to realize that you are indeed a cancer survivor – which is great news in itself – and that life after cancer can be a fulfilling experience for you and those close to you.
Biswajit Rakshit is a professional blogger and writer. He loves to write on various topics.