'Break the Stigma' series all December long!
Educate yourself with the facts and learn how to utilize social support yourself.
1 in 4 lung cancer patients have never smoked a day in their life yet are labeled as deserving their diagnosis. This has lasting effects on future treatment as well as the patients support network.
Read more about the stigma of cancer:
Patients View on smoking, lung cancer, and stigma: A focus group perspective. Rebecca H. Lehto. Michigan State University.
Breast Cancer: Varied Perceptions of Social Support in the Illness Experience. Holly Peters-Golden. Department of Behavioral Sciences, The John Hopkins University, School of Hygiene and Public Health.
You may wonder why a support group is important, but these groups offer the emotional support needed during a time of great stress and confusion. Provides a safe haven to share feelings and challenges. Here are added benefits: · A support group can give you emotional and educational support from cancer diagnosis, treatment, all the way to recovery. · There are many support systems which fit your own personality so it will be able to personally suit your needs and expectations · A support group allows you to involve yourself with others who are out there to help you and others in your situation.
"In many parts of the world the word “cancer” is not used because of how negatively it is looked at. This stigma can affect a survivor’s quality of life. Sadly, over forty-percent of people interviewed regard the fear of cancer being the reason they prevent themselves from receiving cancer screenings—which could lead to increased suffering or death.
In many parts of the world the word “cancer” is not used because of how negatively it is looked at. This stigma is not individualized but can also affect those suffering on a national level as resources and funding may not go to properly towards the cancer care system because no one wants to speak of it. This stigma can affect a survivor’s quality of life. Sadly, over forty-percent of people interviewed regard the fear of cancer being the reason they prevent themselves from receiving cancer screenings—which could lead to increased suffering or death."
Without all the other added stress that comes with a cancer diagnosis and treatment, finding a support group could seem like a daunting task. Luckily, cancer support groups may be more readily available than you may think. Options to find them include:
-Consulting your doctor, nurse or cancer center for support groups in your area.
-Searching lists of groups classified by specific cancer or who support all cancers
-Finding public sources such as a library or community group
-Finding the health section of a newspaper
-ACS, National Cancer Information Center
Expressive writing fits into any patient or caregivers life. This affordable form of support improves overall daily functioning and can be done no matter the situation.
CBF promotes this by including a journal and pens in every 'CBF Comfort Bag' we build.
Pennebaker, J. W., & Chung, C. K. (in press). Expressive writing and its links to mental and physical health. In H. S. Friedman (Ed.), Oxford handbook of health psychology. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.
Initial support helps a cancer patient through their journey. It can build a positive cancer experience, up to 8 years after the diagnosis.
"Support from family and friends, characterized by reassuring, comforting and problem-solving, in the period following diagnosis is an important resource that may help cancer survivors find positive meaning in their cancer experience."
Source: Schroevers MJ., Helgeson VS., Sanderman R., Rachor AV. (2010)
Whether you are a caregiver or a patient, you are not alone in your fight against cancer!