Coping with lung cancer
Once a person has been diagnosed with lung cancer there are different emotions that they and the family go through. Living with lung cancer brings in aspects of having to deal with a different emotion, having to cope with side effects and most importantly dealing with the aspect of breathlessness. However, patients who are living with lung cancer have different ways to cope with side effects of treatment and breathlessness. Read on to know more.
Coping with breathlessness
Living with lung cancer means that the feeling of breathlessness may be frequennt. Being breathless can be hard to live with and cause fatigue. Breathing exercises and yoga may help.
Colds and infections
People who have lung cancer are more prone to getting colds and infections that make breathing hard. In this case, it is ideal to contact a doctor as they prescribe antibiotics that will clear the cold or help with the infection to make breathing easier.
The feeling of being anxious may make in turn, cause breathlessness. So it is ideal to be calm in all situations.
When it is hard to breathe, one may notice that the breath becomes faster and that the shoulders tense up. For this reason, one must take mindful breaths.
Coping with the side effects of treatment
After being diagnosed with lung cancer, one might have gone through several treatments like surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, and many others. Most of these treatments have side effects that can show early or late, and these are the following side effects that could show up late:
Digestion problems are one of the frequent late symptoms of treatment and getting a registered dietician could be of great help to patients, since the dietician might prescribe certain foods that may relieve the side effect
Fatigue is a common side effect that is faced by most cancer patients, and some of them may experience it for years.
Learning, memory and attention difficulties
These are the common symptoms that most patients have to deal with after having high doses of chemo and radiation
Dealing with these side effects in the proper manner is of utmost importance and can be done in the following ways:
- Ask the medical team of what to expect
- Be prepared for the late side effects
- Ask the doctor if susceptibility to late side effects of treatment is possible
- If late side effects do show up, be mentally healthy and know that the side effects will eventually pass
- Speak about the late side effects on follow up visits
Read more on how lung cancer prevention.