Anxiety and Cancer
How Does Cancer Affect You Emotionally?
When you think of medical diagnoses that cause anxiety, cancer is probably high on the list. Given that the disease claims many lives, it’s understandable that anxiety and cancer go hand-in-hand both for patients and their loved ones. However, it’s important to understand the difference between feeling anxious and having what’s called an anxiety disorder.
What Is Cancer Anxiety?
Cancer-induced anxiety, or cancer anxiety, is a mental health condition characterized by excessive and persistent worry. While it’s common for cancer patients to have fears and concerns about their future, those worries can sometimes evolve into an anxiety disorder, which is a condition that can and should be addressed.
Symptoms of Anxiety in Cancer Patients
Anxiety in cancer patients is similar to the condition in those without cancer. Cancer anxiety symptoms include:
● Persistent worry
● Difficulty focusing
● Impaired problem solving
● Facial expressions that show worry
● Visible shaking or trembling
● Tense muscles
● Restlessness or fidgety behavior
● Dry mouth
People who have cancer and anxiety symptoms should take action to address the condition.
Tips for Managing Anxiety During Cancer
If you have or develop an anxiety disorder, it’s important to learn how to manage anxiety during cancer treatment. Fortunately, there are many steps you can take. Expressing your concerns to family members or friends can help, as can joining a cancer anxiety support group. Practices like prayer and meditation may also provide relief. Relaxation and deep breathing exercises can be beneficial in calming your body and mind, as well. If appropriate, your doctor may prescribe anti-anxiety medication.
Learn More About Cancer & Anxiety from Baptist Health
Keep learning about the facts of cancer and anxiety with Baptist Health’s blog. If you’re looking for treatment or more information about your cancer care, please contact an oncology provider with Baptist Health today.