Breast Cancer and Mental Health

Breast Cancer and Mental Health

Breast Cancer and Mental Health

Imagine receiving the news that you have breast cancer. A breast cancer diagnosis for women, and also men, can be devastating as it not only affects their physical health but also their mental health. Breast cancer and mental health take a toll on both the patients and their families. This month, as we observe Breast Cancer Awareness, it is very important to prioritize mental health for those living with breast cancer. 

Emotional Symptoms from a Diagnosis

Everyone is unique in the way their emotions are processed. First and foremost, it is important that breast cancer patients know that they are not alone. Some common emotional symptoms patients experience include:

  • Shock
  • Anger
  • loneliness or isolation
  • sadness

When these emotions go without addressing, it can lead to more serious mental health conditions such as anxiety and depression. 

Supporting Mental Health After A Diagnosis

Studies have shown that there is a real need in supporting the mental health of those diagnosed with breast cancer. It is important for patients to reach out to trusted friends and family members. There are also breast cancer-specific support groups available such as the Hope and Healing support group at the Cancer Centers of Southwest Oklahoma. Speaking with a healthcare provider about any mental health concern is just as important as treating their physical condition.

Ways to Improve Emotional Health

When recovering from cancer, we must acknowledge emotions during the cancer journey. Patients should feel comfortable talking about how they are feeling. This is where the healing takes place. There are a few different ways that patients can improve resilience and emotional health.

  • Manage stress levels with exercise or meditation.
  • Keep a regular sleep schedule.
  • Seek support from family, friends, or support groups.
  • Stay involved with activities that were enjoyed before the diagnosis.
  • Volunteer for organizations that help others.
  • Talk to your healthcare provider if you have any concerns.

If you are struggling with emotional health after a cancer diagnosis, you are not alone! It is a long journey filled with ups and downs, successes and struggles. Visit the McMahon Center for Breast Health for more information regarding your cancer diagnosis.



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