During the cancer recovery process, a patient is usually expected to have a new perspective on life. Things are beginning to look up, but the road ahead is still a long one for the survivor as well as family and friends. The expectation that a cancer survivor is now endowed with new wisdom or vigor for life as a result of their successful treatment can be overwhelming and unfair to the former patient, as they are still in the middle of regaining their old life and likely under a lot of stress. Getting back to a normal routine, mentally and physically, is best achieved with rehabilitation and patience following the completion of treatment.
Finding a Rehabilitation Facility
The first step to learn how to regain independence following the lengthy process of cancer treatment is to take advantage of rehabilitation services. Counseling for family and close friends, nutrition consultation, and exercise programs are all examples of resources made available to recovering patients. Results do not occur overnight, but taking advantage of these resources can be essential to the recovery process. Dr. James Forsythe, an oncologist specializing in cancer rehab in Los Angeles, advises patients to choose a rehab facility that offers every service they feel they require. The patient’s comfort and health are the most important thing when it comes to rehabilitation, so they should take care in the facility they choose, making sure it offers everything they need.
Emotional and Psychological Healing
Each and every person copes with illness in a different way, occasionally necessitating professional, psychological aftercare. Total focus on treatment may result in an overwhelming feeling of depression or anxiety during the recovery phase. With a good counselor, every person is treated on an individual basis to find the most appropriate solutions, either using recreational therapy, traditional psychological counseling or medication. Spiritual counseling may be advised if the patient has a religious preference, and this can be done in group or individual sessions. Finding peace and reducing the mental strain is an important step in the overall cancer recovery process, whatever the means of achieving it are.
Regaining Strength and Independence
Cancer has many forms, types, and levels of severity, requiring various levels of treatment to provide a cure. Physical rehab helps build the strength and endurance necessary to eventually perform daily functions without any assistance. Muscle loss is typical for patients required to stay on bed rest for an extended period of time. Recovering patients should be careful to not strain themselves, and learn to let the healing body work at its own pace. In some cases, it may not be necessary to remain in a rehabilitation facility with the assistance of a home health nurse.
No cancer survivor is expected to jump back into life full swing after treatment is completed. Mental and physical recovery needs are not seen as a weakness, and should be approached with patience and willingness. Managing stress, pain, and self-image issues is exactly what professional medical providers and rehabilitation facilities are there to do.