Many women around you such as your friends, your neighbors, your colleagues, or your relatives may have got breast cancer. It seems that this disease is always around you, which is mentioned daily for hours on the radio or on television.
You may be frightened of receiving a diagnosis of breast cancer after mammography or other tests. If you have had it, you will be afraid that someday the disease will recur and take your life.
Although these things may exist around you, it does not mean that you will get breast cancer. If you have had breast cancer, which does not mean that the disease will recur. However, concerns about the disease that you hear about and see around usually are normal and you may already have experienced yourself or from a loved one.
You should not let the fear enter your mind. The fear of patients with breast cancer is not the same as any other with illness -psychologists and experts agree on that point. Fear can take many forms, depending on your stage of illness and your knowledge of the disease. We will help you figure out how you can control your fear, so you can focus on living a happy and healthy life.
1/When you start collecting information to make decisions, you should get to know the people in your medical team and try your best to meet each of them individually. You will find out who is the most friendly, who can answer your questions, who are ready to help you when you need it most.
2/Stay in touch with a doctor who can answer your questions seriously and care about your illness, who provides you with useful information and makes you feel comfortable whenever you have questions need to be answered.
3/Learn what can happen to you from tests, procedures and treatments. Minimize the surprise.
4/Plan with your doctor about how to get test results quickly. If possible, try to schedule tests early in the week, so you do not have to wait more than a long weekend.
5/Find a mammography center where your doctor can give you results before you go home, so you do not have to wait for a letter or a call from your doctor.
6/When you know you will have a challenging week (coming soon for a mammogram or a chemotherapy session), you should ignore stressful work plans such as bookkeeping, cooking for 20 people, or an important meeting at the workplace. Look for outside help -friends, movies, yoga, pray – to help you get through it.
7/If people try to tell you stories about other people fighting cancer, stop them immediately and say “I’ve just heard stories with a happy ending.”
8/If you ever find it difficult, talk to your doctor about the role of drugs that can help relieve anxiety, depression, or sleepless problems.
9/Join a group of patients with breast cancer which can often contact each other. This can be a support group or online forum – a place to share openly your experiences with your illness with interested people. Doing anything that makes you feel you are getting out of breast cancer gradually.
10/Work to feel how meaningful your life is. Find out how to improve your life, accept yourself, and spend time with people who understand how you have chosen to cope with the disease.